Pau Gasol considers not playing on Olympics because of Zika virus

Pau Gasol considers not playing on Olympics because of Zika virus

Spanish basketball player Pau Gasol is contemplating on his attendance at the Rio Olympics in Brazil on June because of the country’s concern on handling the spread of Zika Virus.

The Chicago bulls star said to the Associated Press that he is still thinking whether he will be going or not because of the risks of contracting the virus and said that other athletes and everyone else who are considering going to the Olympics should think twice too.

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He mentioned that some of the athletes that are planning to participate are also planning to have a family in the future, and he won’t be surprised if some of these athletes back out from the Olympics because they want to protect their families.

Gasol, without mentioning names, also said that he has talked to some Spanish players who have already admitted to thinking about not joining in the Olympics. As a previous medical student before joining the basketball scene, he expressed his need to be an advocate in informing others more about the risks of the Virus.

“I feel responsible to know more about the situation and to inform everyone about it,” said Gasol.

Gasol said that Olympic committees and health organizations should make it clear on the risks in Brazil so the other athletes can make a decision on taking risks and going to the Olympics or not.

Over 150 public health workers addressed an open letter to World Health Organization Director-General Margaret Chan, asking her to relocate or postpone the Olympics 2016, but the WHO dismissed the call and said the relocation and postponement of the Olympics will not significantly change the spread of the virus .

Photo courtesy: Twitter/ Pau Gasol