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AFL chief Gillon McLachlan says if a player tests positive for coronavirus, the league will shut for 30 days


March 20, 2020 16:49:41

The AFL will shut down for 30 days if a single player tests positive for coronavirus, chief executive Gillon McLachlan has said.

Key points:

  • Gillon McLachlan had previously said a positive test would only trigger a 14-day shutdown
  • Games are being played without fans because of concerns over coronavirus
  • Players were seen sharing water bottles during the season opener

“We would certainly stand down for a minimum of 30 days,” McLachlan told 3AW radio on Friday.

“We need to make sure that our protocols are completely tight.”

McLachlan had previously said a positive test to a player would result in a 14-day closure of the competition.

He said no players had tested positive to the coronavirus, but said some were “in quarantine”.

“I know there are no players or officials from tonight’s game that are pending tests,” he added.

Stay up-to-date on the coronavirus outbreak

Western Bulldogs play Collingwood tonight after Richmond defeated Carlton in the season opener on Thursday night at an empty MCG.

“It’s just different,” McLachlan said of games without fans.

“Who knows how long we go for. But I think people will get used to that. It was just great to see footy.

“Everyone is in such a terrible spot at the moment … [if] we get around the TV sets and get lost in it, hopefully for a few hours forget about the fact that people are losing jobs and people are crook and everything else.

“It’s not the only reason, clearly there’s others … we’re a game but not the main game.”

McLachlan also said players were unlikely to share water bottles, as they did during Thursday night’s opener.

“The first game, I think you will forgive everyone for being a bit habitual,” he said.

“We will get the protocols better and I think you will see changes tonight.”

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First posted

March 20, 2020 16:33:53

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