Tough quarantine restrictions could see the Australian Open moved or even delayed after the Victorian government has again refused to accept Tennis Australia’s proposals for player travel.
The Melbourne Herald Sun has reported premier Dan Andrews has rejected Tennis Australia’s request for stars to arrive in Victoria from next month to begin preparations.
And time is now running out for a workable solution given the current two-week quarantine requirements for international arrivals.
Media reports have suggested the delays centre around an explosive report into the much, criticised State quarantine system, due to be released at the end of December, and the fallout from that.
But Andrews, who draconian stance has angered many Victorians, believes the event could still go ahead.
“We are working very, very closely with Tennis Australia and they are working with all of their partners,” he said.
When asked if there was a “December ban” on overseas players entering Victoria, he said:“I wouldn’t put it in terms that it’s a ban.
“As far as visas, that’s a matter for the Commonwealth.
“Whether they need to be here in December is the other issue.
“I don’t know if that necessarily means there isn’t an Australian Open.”
The Australian Open is scheduled to begin on January 18, meaning the earliest an international player could end quarantine, having arrived after December, is four days before the event.