Two players test positive for COVID-19
Two Australian Open tennis players have tested positive for COVID-19 after arriving in the city of Melbourne, amid growing controversy over the event.
A third case involved a ‘non-playing participant’, according to the State of Victoria’s Chief Health Officer. Some 1,200 people, including players, staff and officials, have flown into Australia for the tournament, which begins on 8 February.
But a row over quarantine rules has cast a shadow over the upcoming event. Some players have expressed frustration about being confined to hotel rooms full-time while other rivals are not. And some residents in Melbourne - a city which endured one of the world’s longest lockdowns last year - have their own concerns about the potential COVID risk posed by the tournament.
Positive cases on three flights have forced 72 players into full quarantine, meaning they have to isolate full-time in their hotel room for 14 days instead of being allowed outside to train like other participants.
It has angered some players, and led world number one Novak Djokovic to lobby authorities to relax quarantine rules for players - including shorter periods.