National Post (National Edition)
Australia tennis chief urges strict quarantine for Tokyo
•Makingthe Olympics safe from coronavirus will be difficult for the Tokyo Games without stiff quarantine measures that will also inspire athletes and spectators with the confidence to attend events,
Australia's top tennis official said on Wednesday.
The Japanese capital is expected to welcome 11,000 athletes at the end of July, when it holds the Summer Games postponed from last year because of the virus, but is not currently considering wholesale quarantine for them.
Speaking on the sidelines of the Australian Open — the first major Grand Slam event to host crowds — the chief executive of Tennis Australia said his experience of organizing the contest suggested the Olympics needed rigorous quarantine measures.
“I've seen the playbook for the Olympics and I've looked at it carefully,” Craig Tiley told Reuters. “And compared to what we've done, we've had a far more rigorous program than is being proposed at the Olympics.”
It took a gruelling effort by his 600-strong team over the last 11 months to get the year's biggest sporting event, the Australian Open, ready for crowds amid the pandemic.
That included ferrying 1,200 players, officials and media on 17 flights from 8 countries, arranging 14 days of quarantine and more than 30,000 tests, while limiting any chance for the virus to return to a city that stamped it out with four months of hard lockdown last year.
Despite the rigour, 10 people still tested positive, forcing the abandonment of a full day of warm-up matches while testing and isolation measures were adopted.