The 2021 Australian Open will start on Monday as planned says Tournament Director Craig Tiley despite a COVID scare yesterday which has impacted hundreds of players.
The first Grand Slam of the year has already had its fair share of complications and controversy before it's even started.
The Australian Open was initially delayed by three weeks due to coronavirus restrictions, then 72 players were put into hard quarantine unable to leave their rooms for 14 days.
The remaining players had five hours a day court practice while some top players were given additional benefits such as balconies and gyms at a different base in Adelaide leaving others disgruntled at the perceived favourtism.
Yesterday it was announced that a security guard from one of the players' hotels has tested positive, meaning over 500 players and members of their teams were instructed to self-isolate and all scheduled warm-up matches at Melbourne Park were suspended.
Tiley though, insists that despite this newest setback, the Australian Open will continue as planned on Monday.
“We’re absolutely confident the Australian Open will go ahead" said Craig Tiley.
“We will be starting on Monday and we have no intention of changing times.
“We know that we have a period now where we have to work with those 507 players and their staff. The probability is very low that there’ll be an issue though.
“We expect them all to test negative. The plan is to continue to play [in the lead-up events] tomorrow as planned.
“If we have to go through this again, we’ll go through this again. We have three and a half weeks of tennis to play and we’ll go an as scheduled.”
For more exclusive content from Tennisbuzz, including news, features, trivia, promotions and more, please be sure to sign up for our newsletter below or via our home page.
Why not test your tennis knowledge by tackling one of our fiendish quizzes too?