The Sports Authority of India has closed its 67 training centres due to COVID-19 ©Getty Images

The Sports Authority of India (SAI) has closed its 67 training centres as a result of rising COVID-19 cases, however national camps for elite athletes preparing for the Asian Games and Commonwealth Games are set to continue in bubbles.

The decision was taken after at least 15 senior and 35 junior athletes returned positive coronavirus tests at the SAI Netaji Subhas Southern Centre in Bengaluru.

"In view of rising cases of COVID-19, the Sports Authority of India has decided to close the 67 SAI Training centres across the country," the SAI said in a statement.

"The decision also comes in the wake of directives issued by various states to suspend sporting activities for the safety of athletes.

"There is no change in training schedule of elite athletes training for Asian and Commonwealth Games later this year.

"They are training in bio-bubbles at the National Centres of Excellence and following all precautions."

India's Health Ministry reported 179,723 new COVID-19 cases yesterday, with the number of active cases in the country now officially 723,619, the highest number for more than 200 days.

The nation's reported death toll has also climbed to more than 483,000.

SAI countermeasures implemented at training centres to combat COVID-19 before they were shut included weekly testing of all athletes and support staff.

As well as the outbreak in Bengaluru, 24 athletes and 12 staff in Bhopal were found to have COVID-19.