Players locked down due to positive tests ahead of season's first major tennis tournament

Players locked down due to positive tests ahead of season's first major tennis tournament
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Australia has quarantined an additional 25 tennis players after another passenger on a charter flight carrying them tested positive for the coronavirus.

The passenger was not a member of the Australian Open’s playing contingent, but the test will force all 58 of the flight’s passengers who arrived in Melbourne this weekend to quarantine for the next 14 days, according to The Associated Press. The tennis major’s organizers had announced earlier that 47 players would have to quarantine after four people on two other charter flights had tested positive.

The move has sparked some pushback from players, who argue they are being held responsible for others’ actions. Sorana Cirstea of Romania tweeted “If they would have told us this rule before I would not play Australia ... I would have stayed home. They told us we would fly at 20% capacity, in sections and we would be a close contact ONLY if my team or cohort tests positive.”

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Local health officials have said that players were warned of the risks ahead of time, according to the AP. Any players violating the quarantine risk fines or the possibility of being transferred to a guarded complex.

Emma Cassar, the quarantine commissioner for Australia’s Victoria state, said she had already observed cases of people “testing” quarantine protocols but no one had yet actively attempted to escape.

“There’ll be zero tolerance for that behavior,” she said. “This is designed to make people safe. We make no apologies for that.”

If you’re on a plane 16-24 hours, with air that circulates throughout the plane, you are a close contact,” she added. “This was made very clear and nothing has changed.”