By Philip O'Connor
TOKYO (Reuters) - A typhoon brewing off the coast of Japan might save the Olympic surfing dream of Costa Rica's Carlos Munoz, who is racing to Tokyo as a late replacement for Frederico Morais following the latter's positive COVID-19 test earlier this week.
Slated to compete in the fifth and final heat of the competition on Sunday, Munoz did not make it in time to start as he is currently winging his way to Japan and hoping that the weather might help him.
The third- and fourth-placed finishers in each four-man heat get a second chance in round two later on Sunday. If that round is cancelled due to bad weather Munoz could still make it, but the odds of the Costa Rican getting there in time are slim.
Though the swell was good as surfing made its Olympic debut, there was little sign of the kind of inclement weather that might cause the rest of the day's competition to be postponed, giving Munoz more time to get to the Tsurigasaki Surfing Beach.
"A decision on round two will be taken shortly, and his (Munoz's) situation will not be factored into it," an International Surfing Association official told Reuters.
(Reporting by Philip O'Connor; Editing by Kenneth Maxwell)