Fans will be allowed to attend AFL matches this weekend at the MCG and Docklands, although there will be additional rules for spectators.
- The AFL will make a decision on Wednesday lunchtime about crowd restrictions at this weekend’s games
- The AFL said “extensive” cleaning was underway at the MCG after a positive case visited on Sunday
- Teams due to travel interstate this weekend have been asked to travel early and undergo testing
Victoria’s Minister for Tourism, Sport and Major Events, Martin Pakula, said the additional rules would likely relate to the wearing of masks and overall capacity.
The AFL will confirm these details later on Wednesday.
Current restrictions allow for 85 per cent capacity at the 100,024-person capacity MCG and 53,359-person capacity Docklands stadium.
Mr Pakula also said it was possible the roof at Docklands Stadium would be open to make the venue outdoors.
Acting Premier James Merlino said later this could change if the outbreak worsens, with the state’s Chief Health Officer Brett Sutton adding the games could be cancelled.
One of the ten positive cases recorded in Victoria on Tuesday attended the AFL match between Collingwood and Port Adelaide at the MCG on Sunday afternoon.
The AFL and Melbourne Cricket Club has contacted all fans seated between bay M1 and M16 of the Great Southern Stand, asking them to get tested and isolate immediately.
However, despite the new cases, the AFL said it was confident the processes it had in place were working.
“The AFL have ensured each match has a COVIDSafe Event Plan that is endorsed by the relevant State Department of Health,” the AFL said in a statement.
“Each plan has specific measures in place to reduce any potential risk, including the sectioning of grounds to limit patron movement.
“The AFL and the MCC have prepared for this situation in multiple simulations, with contact information linked to ticketing data and QR codes.
“The announcement is a reminder why the AFL and various governments worked to develop measures that prioritised the health and wellbeing of fans and allowed the speedy identification of all patrons attending each match in the event of a positive test.”
The AFL added that “extensive” cleaning takes place at each venue after every game.
It also said a deep clean of the identified zone is now taking place.
Docklands is set to host three games this weekend, starting with Friday’s big top-of-the-table clash between the Western Bulldogs and Melbourne.
The MCG will host two games, starting with Collingwood’s match against Geelong on Saturday.
Testing, early flights for AFL teams
Essendon, who will play West Coast in Perth on Saturday night, will fly to Perth days earlier than usual, departing Wednesday morning.
All players and staff will then be tested and isolate until given the all-clear on the advice of the Western Australia government and the AFL.
Carlton, set to play the Swans in Sydney on Sunday, will fly there on Wednesday afternoon and will also isolate until receiving the results of their tests.
Hawthorn will fly to Darwin on Thursday for its match against Gold Coast on Saturday night, a day earlier than planned.
Western Bulldogs players and staff all tested negative on Tuesday morning.
A staff member had attended an exposure site at Highpoint Shopping Centre.
In the NRL, Melbourne Storm are set to play the Brisbane Broncos in Brisbane on Thursday night.
There are no Super Netball fixtures scheduled for Melbourne this weekend.
South East Melbourne Phoenix are set to host Cairns Taipans in the NBL on Saturday night.
In the A-League, Western United is due to host Melbourne Victory on Friday night at AAMI Park, while Melbourne City is down to host Newcastle at the same venue on Saturday.