Adelaide and Port Adelaide may have to join the West Coast and Fremantle in the footy ‘hub’ to get 2020 AFL The season is ongoing again, after the South Australian government has denied the rights of the team ‘fly in, fly out’ to avoid the mandatory 14-day quarantine period.
The decision, sent from the government to league CEO Gillon McLachlan in a letter on Wednesday night, was another blow to the AFL after Western Australia also said it would not allow exceptions for the Eagles or Dockers to host inter-state teams for the match.
The letter, signed by South Australia’s chief health officer Professor Nicola Spurrier, and police chief Grant Stevens, said “public health risks” were too great to allow clubs from the state – and players and staff from Crows and Power – to avoid mandatory 14-day quarantine measures.
“On public health advice, the committee has decided that any economic and social benefits to be gained by allowing modifications or exceptions to SA quarantine requirements for AFL players and staff are not proportionate to public health risks,” the letter said.
“We recognize that for AFL to restart equipment at the desired time frame, this may require players and staff to travel to alternative locations in the medium term.
“In addition to modifications or reductions which are considered unnecessary public health risks in South Australia, the Committee notes that as a highly visible part of the community, it is also important that the AFL model of behavior is expected from the community in general.
“The risk of complacency in the wider community will increase if these steps become increasingly important.”
Earlier on Wednesday it was revealed the West Coast was preparing to base itself on the Gold Coast to restart the ongoing season, while all the players and AFL staff were in the midst of the COVID-19 test blitz ahead of the potential re-launch of the season.