The Maltese contingent has started to trickle into Tokyo as COVID-19 regulations stipulate that athletes have been instructed to arrive no earlier than five days prior to their competition and leave no later than two days after their event concludes.
Badminton player Matthew Abela was the first to arrive and has already training. He was followed by shooter Eleanor Bezzina and earlier on this morning swimmers Andrew Chetcuti and Sasha Gatt with their coach Artem Goncharenko arrived at the village.
The remaining athletes are expected to arrive by the end of the week.
Chef de Mission Dr Lucienne Attard explained that although the strict measures in place have limited the interaction between athletes, this has not dampened the overall anticipation of competition and the spirit amongst the Maltese contingent is high.
The Opening Ceremony is scheduled to take place on Friday at 2000hrs (Tokyo time) at the Olympic Stadium. The Maltese flag will be carried by shooter Eleanor Bezzina and swimmer Andrew Chetcuti who both have competed in previous Olympic Games.
TENTATIVE SCHEDULE FOR MALTESE ATHLETES
Sunday 25th July
Men’s Singles Matthew Abela vs Shi Yu Q (CHN)
10m Air Pistol Qualifications Eleanor Bezzina
400m Heats Sasha Gatt
Monday 26th July
1500m heats Sasha Gatt
Tuesday 27th July
64kgs Yazmin Zammit Stevens
100m heats Andrew Chetcuti
Thursday 29th July
25m Pistol Qualifications Eleanor Bezzina
Friday 30th July
100m Heats Carla Scicluna
Note: Times quoted above are local (Tokyo) times.