Australian Open in further disarray after fresh COVID case

Melbourne, Feb 3: Ahead of the Australian Open, a member of hotel staff in Melbourne was tested positive for COVID-19 on Wednesday.

Six ATP and WTA competitions are being held as a lead up for the Australian Open at Melbourne Park. However, the fate of the upcoming Grand Slam went for a toss as those associated with the Australian Open who quarantined at the hotel were asked to isolate. The Australian Open also confirmed that there will no matches at Melbourne Park on Thursday.

“Health Authorities have advised us that a Hotel Quarantine worker has tested positive for COVID-19. Those associated with the AO who quarantined at the hotel now need to be tested and isolate until they receive a negative test result,” the Australian Open tweeted.

“We will work with everyone involved to facilitate testing as quickly as possible.
There will be no matches at Melbourne Park on Thursday. An update on the schedule for Friday will be announced later today,” it added.

Earlier, some tennis players were asked to be in hard quarantine before the Australian Open in Melbourne as their flights resulted in some positive COVID-19 cases.

However, Indian Tennis player Sumit Nagal opined that players who were in strict quarantine would not be at any disadvantage as there is still one week before the Australian Open starts.

“I do not think that players who were in strict quarantine will be at disadvantage, everyone is going to have a week before the Australian Open starts. They are going to have eight-nine days, they are going to catch up. They also have first priority to everything, which is fair enough, nobody is questioning about that,” said Nagal on Tuesday.

On Tuesday, Spanish tennis player Rafael Nadal announced that he would not be participating in the ATP Cup match against Alex de Minaur and Australia.
The ATP Cup is a men’s tennis tournament between competing nations, which premiered in January 2020. The tournament is played in Australia over ten days in the lead up to the Australian Open and features teams from 24 countries.
Australian Open will take place at Melbourne Park from February 8-21 and will feature singles, doubles, and wheelchair competitions.