LIST: In sports, coronavirus shows no respect for stars or youth
PARIS, France – High-level sports was one of the first social activities shut down by the coronavirus pandemic and many athletes, who play in front of crowds and train with teammates, have been among the high-profile victims.
While only one sports personality, the 76-year-old former Real Madrid president, Lorenzo Sanz, has so far died, those infected spread across the age range and the sporting spectrum, with clusters in basketball, football, and cycling.
The numbers could be higher because not all clubs are testing.
Valladolid in the Spanish Liga rejected test kits saying they should be used on those who need them.
The NBA's Golden State Warriors said they would only test players with symptoms.
"We're treating ourselves like people, which is what we are," said general manager Bob Myers. "We're just a basketball team."
Here, AFP Sport looks at some of the most high-profile cases:
Lorenzo Sanz (Real Madrid, football)
Sanz, who died on March 21, was in charge of Real Madrid from 1995-2000, overseeing two Champions League titles.
"My father has just passed away. He did not deserve this ending and in this way," tweeted his son, Lorenzo Sanz Jr.
Kevin Durant (Brooklyn Nets, basketball)
NBA star Kevin Durant, a former NBA Most Valuable Player, is one of 4 Brooklyn Nets players to have tested positive. The forward had been sitting out the season recovering from an Achilles injury.
"Everyone be careful, take care of yourself and quarantine. We're going to get through this," said the 31-year-old Durant.
Rudy Gobert, Donovan Mitchell (Utah Jazz, basketball)
Utah Jazz star Rudy Gobert tested positive for the virus. The Frenchman – the NBA's back-to-back Defensive Player of the Year – had to apologize after pointedly touching every microphone and voice recorder on a table in front of him at a media conference, only to then test positive for COVID-19.
Just hours after his diagnosis, his teammate and All-Star guar Donovan Mitchell became the second NBA player to test positive for COVID-19.
Gobert shared he was experiencing one of the lesser-known symptoms of the illness.
"Just to give you guys an update, loss of smell and taste is definitely one of the symptoms, haven't been able to smell anything for the last 4 days," Gobert wrote on Twitter.
NBA players, personnel (basketball)
A total of 14 NBA players and personnel tested positive for the virus. Aside from the Utah Jazz and the Brooklyn Nets, the Los Angeles Lakers, Philadelphia 76ers, Boston Celtics, Detroit Pistons, and Denver Nuggets also announced that they have confirmed cases.
"I advise my generation, I am 26, to take it seriously," Smart said. "Be alert. Take precautions. By protecting yourself, you protect others."
Kozo Tashima (Olympics)
On March 17, while the International Olympic Committee and local organizers were still insisting the Tokyo Games would go ahead as scheduled this summer, Japan Olympic Committee deputy chief Kozo Tashima said he had contracted coronavirus.
"I have a mild fever. Examinations showed a symptom of pneumonia, but I'm fine," the 62-year-old Tashima said in a statement, issued via the Japan Football Association, which he also heads.
Mikel Arteta (Arsenal, football)
Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta tested positive for COVID-19. The English Premier League was suspended the day after the Gunners announced Arteta had tested positive.
As a result of the Spaniard's diagnosis, the Arsenal squad were sent into self-isolation for 14 days.
Callum Hudson-Odoi (Chelsea, football)
Callum Hudson-Odoi, the 19-year-old Chelsea and England winger, on March 13 became the first Premier League player to test positive.
The club said at the time that the teenager was "doing well."
Thiago Seyboth Wild (Brazil, tennis)
Among other young, rising, stars to catch the virus is 20-year-old Brazilian tennis player Thiago Seyboth Wild who announced on March 25 that he had tested positive.
He said he started feeling ill "about 10 days ago."
That came after a globe-trotting period typical of the tennis circuit.
On March 1, Seyboth Wild won his first ATP title in Santiago Chile. The following week he played in a Davis Cup tie in Adelaide, Australia.
"I really don't think he's the only player who has it," former player Lindsey Davenport told Tennis Channel. "We have so many players all over the world."
Cameron van der Burgh (South Africa, swimming)
Olympic champion swimmer Cameron van der Burgh announced on March 22 he had contracted the virus, noting he had been “struggling with COVID-19 for 14 days.”
Van der Burgh, the 2012 Olympic 100m breaststroke world champion and former world record holder, retired from the sport in 2018.
"By far the worst virus I have ever endured despite being a healthy individual with strong lungs (no smoking/sport), living a healthy lifestyle, and being young (least at risk demographic,” South Africa's Van der Burgh, who’s still fit at 31, wrote on Twitter.
Wu Lei (Espanyol, football)
Chinese football star Wu Lei, who plays for Espanyol in Spain, tested positive for COVD-19.
"Wu Lei has mild symptoms and is currently undergoing treatment," the Chinese Football Association (CFA) said in a statement on March 21.
The 28-year-old striker, China's best-known player, is in self-isolation at home in Barcelona.
Daniele Rugani, Paulo Dybala, Blaise Matuidi (Juventus, football)
Defender Daniele Rugani of Italian champion Juventus was the first player from Italy's Serie A to test positive.
Since then, teammates Blaise Matuidi, a World Cup winner with France, and star striker Paulo Dybala have tested positive.
Dybala revealed how he "struggled to breathe" after contracting coronavirus.
"I gasped for air and as a result I couldn't do anything, after 5 minutes I was already very tired, I felt the body heavy and my muscles hurt," the 26-year-old Dybala said.
Sean Payton (New Orleans Saints, American football)
Sean Payton, the long-time head coach of the New Orleans Saints in the NFL, announced March 19 that he has coronavirus.
"If people understand the curve, and understand the bump, we can easily work together as a country to reduce it," 56-year-old Peyton, who led the Saints to their only Super Bowl victory in 2009.
Luca Kilian (Paderborn, football)
In Germany, Luca Kilian is among 4 known cases in the Bundesliga but the news is good for the 20-year-old Paderborn defender.
The club's sporting director, Martin Przondziono, told German media Kilian "had two days of real trouble, with fever and chills, but he's better now."
"On March 12, I had the first of my hot flushes and a day later they were really strong," shared Kilian. "Fever and strong shivers. It was then I started being really scared for the first time."
Valencia, the first Spanish football club to report coronavirus infections, said that 35% of players and staff members have tested positive for the disease.
Six players at Sampdoria, Bartosz Bereszynski, Albin Ekdal, Morten Thorsby, Antonio La Gumina, Manolo Gabbiadini and Fabio Depaoli, along with team doctor Amedo Baldari, have tested positive. But teammate Omar Colley said reports that he had tested positive were wrong.
Former AC Milan defender Paolo Maldini, another World Cup winner, and his footballer son Daniel announced they were positive.
In Spain, center-backs Ezequiel Garay from Argentina and Frenchman Eliaquim Mangala are among 5 cases.
Belgian midfielder Marouane Fellaini, the former Manchester United and Everton midfielder who is with Shandong Luneng Taishan in China also reported that he had tested positive.
Alex Hales (cricket)
Former England cricketer Alex Hales self-isolated after showing symptoms. Two other England cricketers, Tom Curran and Jade Dernbach, who had gone out to play darts with Hales to celebrate Curran's 25th birthday, also self-isolated.
Fatih Terim (Galatasaray, football)
Another iconic coach, Fatih Terim, 66-year-old manager of Istanbul football giants Galatasaray, has tested positive.
Fernando Gaviria, Dmitry Strakhov (cycling)
The first sportspeople to be hit by the virus were at cycling's UAE Tour in late February. One of the victims, Colombian rider Fernando Gaviria, tweeted on March 12: "I'm okay and I'm feeling good."
He was the second of two cyclists at the UAE Tour to have been identified with the virus after Russian Gazprom cyclist Dmitry Strakhov.
But recently, cycling media were reporting that 8 people are still quarantined in a hospital in Abu Dhabi.