Covid-19 scare wreaks havoc on Australian Open warm-up events
Today's matches at Australian Open tune-up events at Melbourne Park were cancelled after a hotel quarantine worker tested Covid-19 positive, organisers Tennis Australia said.
Up to 600 players and support staff connected to the Australian Open will have to isolate until they have been tested, after a man, who worked his last shift at the Grand Hyatt Hotel in Melbourne last Friday, returned a positive result yesterday.
"We will work with everyone involved to facilitate testing as quickly as possible," the organisers of the Feb 8-21 Grand Slam said on Twitter.
"There will be no matches at Melbourne Park on Thursday. An update on the schedule for Friday will be announced later today."
More than 1,000 players, coaches and officials jetted into largely virus-free Australia last month for 14 days' quarantine ahead of the year's opening Grand Slam.
Before the announcement of the cancellation of today's play, Daniel Andrews, premier of Victoria state, held a late-night press conference.
He said: "There is a number of about 500, 600 people who are players and officials and others who are casual contacts.
"They will be isolating until they get a negative test and that work will be done tomorrow...
"At this stage, there's no impact to the tournament proper."
Test results are generally returned within 24 hours.
Six ATP and WTA tournaments are ongoing in Melbourne to get players ready for the Australian Open. - REUTERS, AFP