Tennis players will almost certainly not be allowed to play the Australian Open if they are not vaccinated, it has been confirmed.
In January this year vaccinations were not widely available, meaning players had to quarantine for two weeks before the start of the tournament.
Next year things will be different, though, with Victoria Premier Daniel Andrews saying players will be told to make a simple choice between being vaccinated or missing the Australian Open.
“On the question of vaccination, no,” Andrews told the media about whether tennis players will get special exceptions to play the Australian Open.
“[COVID] doesn’t care what your tennis ranking is, or how many Grand Slams you’ve won. It’s completely irrelevant.
“You need to be vaccinated to keep yourself safe and to keep others safe.”
There is a vaccination mandate currently in force in Melbourne, and Andrews has confirmed that applies to foreign athletes as well as Australian ones.
In fact, he said he’s expecting players to not even be granted visas if they are not fully vaccinated.
“Professional sport is part of those [on the] authorised worker list and they have to be double-dose vaccinated,” he said.
“I don’t think an unvaccinated tennis player is going to get a visa to come into this country and if they did get a visa they’d probably have to quarantine for a couple of weeks.
“[But] I don’t think that the person you indicated (Djokovic) or any other tennis player will even get a visa to get here [if they are not vaccinated].”
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