The stars of the tennis world have arrived in Melbourne for the year’s first grand slam and were strictly told by the Australian Open authorities that they would be given no privileges during their quarantine days.
The number of tennis players in hard quarantine in Melbourne increased to 72 on Monday as all competitors were told they would not be afforded any “special treatment” ahead of next month’s Australian Open.
In total, nine people have tested positive among players, coaches, and airline staff who have arrived down under ahead of the first major in the tennis calendar, due to start on February 8.
The quarantine Blues-From food to isolation
The notion of extra privileges for players has been dismissed by Victoria state premier Daniel Andrews. Novak Djokovic asked for fewer days in isolation while others have expressed their frustration at the conditions.
Men’s world number one Novak Djokovic has reportedly sent a letter to Tennis Australia boss Craig Tiley with a list of demands, including allowing players to move to private homes with tennis courts and to spend less time in isolation if they repeatedly test negative.
But that notion was given short shrift by Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews who told reporters: “People are free to provide lists of demands but the answer is no.”
Some players have expressed surprise at the stricter rules, suggesting they were not aware that if someone on their flight tested positive, they would have to adhere to a hard 14-day quarantine, without the opportunity to practice.
However, Andrews stated all competitors we briefed before they started their journey to Australia. “I know that there’s been a bit of chatter from a number of players about the rules,” he said.
“Well, the rules apply to them as they apply to everybody else, and they were all briefed on that before they came… There’s no special treatment here. Because the virus doesn’t treat you specially. So neither do we”
Updates from the Australian open-
Indian tennis star Rohan Bopanna has arrived for the Australian Open and has been forced into a strict quarantine since he too was on the infected flight from Doha.
“Yes I was (travelling in that flight),” said Bopanna. “So have another 12 days in quarantine now despite being negative.”
In all, a total of 72 players, including multiple Grand Slam champions Victoria Azarenka and Angelique Kerber, have been sent to the harshest quarantines possible,cause of recurring covid cases on Australia bound flights.