February 4, 2021
MELBOURNE (Reuters) – Nearly 500 Australian Open players and staff who stayed at a quarantine hotel where a worker contracted COVID-19 have tested negative for the coronavirus, with 12 awaiting results, tournament director Craig Tiley said on Friday.
Tiley told Australian radio that 495 people among the Australian Open cohort of 507 who stayed at the Grand Hyatt in Melbourne had been cleared.
“So far everyone is negative,” Tiley told 3AW.
“We’ve got a few pending. The pending ones are just a result of them being tested later last night.
“So far that’s positive and hopefully in the next few hours, we get the positive outcome that they are all are negative.”
The Australian Open group at the Grand Hyatt, which included 160 players, were instructed to get tested and isolate until they had a result after health officials on Wednesday revealed a worker at the hotel had contracted the virus.
Warm-up matches at Melbourne Park were called off on Thursday but are set to resume on Friday.
The players who tested negative are free to participate in the six warm-up events at the Grand Slam venue to allow them to get match practice after 14 days in quarantine.
Victoria state, of which Melbourne is the capital, reported no new cases of community transmission on Friday.
Authorities have approved 30,000 fans per day, about 50% capacity, at the Australian Open, which starts on Monday.
“Spectators will continue to be allowed in the site, and we are still selling tickets,” Tiley said.
“The site will be an extremely safe place.”
(Reporting by Ian Ransom in Melbourne; Editing by Pritha Sarkar)