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Fans to return to Australian Open and indoor fitness and sport to resume as Victoria lifts Coronavirus lockdown
With the Victorian Government announced the end of its five-day lockdown fans will be able to return for the concluding days of the Australian Open while indoor fitness, physical recreation and sport activities can also resume.
With Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews announcing that the state’s five-day lockdown will not be extended beyond midnight tonight (Wednesday 17th February), Australian Open Tournament Director Craig Tiley confirmed that the tournament’s fan attendance strategy will be reactivated with venues able to operate at 50% of capacity per session - as was the case prior to last Friday’s lockdown.
From tomorrow, attendance at Melbourne Park’s main Rod Laver Arena will be capped at 7,477 per session, with fans allowed access to the full site, including Grand Slam Oval and Garden Square.
However, Tiley cautioned that fans will still be required to wear masks in the stands, telling Nine News Melbourne “we're pleased with that amount. Having that number of people in the crowd makes a massive difference.
“Last week we had our first real experience of live sport with fans in the stands and the atmosphere was electric. The players appreciated the opportunity to compete in front of crowds for the first time in almost a year, and many spoke about how emotional it was to connect with fans again.
“The COVIDSafe measures we had in place will continue, and we’ve opened up the zones so everyone can access the full site and enjoy both Grand Slam Oval and Garden Square.”
For indoor fitness, recreation and sport activities, they will return to COVIDSafe Summer restrictions with some revised conditions.
A summary of restrictions as they impact community sport and physical recreation are detailed below:
Indoor physical recreation and community sport:
• Permitted for all ages
• No patron caps with a density quotient of 1 per 4 metre² for each space
• Gym and exercise classes limited to 50 people (excluding anyone necessary for running the class). COVID Marshals required when gyms are staffed
• At times when gyms are unstaffed, a density quotient of 1 per 8 metre² applies
• Signage must state the number of people permitted inside, wipes and disinfectant must be supplied for use by patrons, and record keeping is required and venues with capacity of greater than 500 patrons must publish a COVIDSafe Plan online.
Outdoor physical recreation and community sport:
• Permitted for all ages
• Up to a maximum of 100 patrons for outdoor fitness classes with a density quotient of 1 per 2 metre²
• Record keeping is required and venues with capacity of greater than 500 patrons must publish a COVIDSafe Plan online.
Pools, including swimming classes:
• Indoor venues open with a density quotient of 1 per 4 metre²
• Outdoor pools open with a density quotient of 1 per 2 metre²
• Record keeping is required.
Outdoor communal gym equipment and publicly accessible playgrounds are also open while face masks must be carried at all times and are mandatory when inside (except in a residential home) and outdoors when a physical distance of 1.5 metres cannot be maintained (unless a lawful exemption applies).
Image: Melbourne Park from the air.
16th February 2021 - Victoria Police make three arrests after storming Melbourne gym ignoring lockdown
8th February 2021 - COVIDSafe measures in place across Melbourne Park precinct for Australian Open
9th February 2021 - Community sport facilities deliver $7 billion value to Victoria
30th January 2021 - Victorian Government approves crowd limit of 30,000 per day for Australian Open
29th January 2021 - Australian Open tennis players start leaving hotel quarantine
17th December 2020 - ATP reveals 2021 schedule with Australian Open to start on 8th February
4th October 2020 - Australian Open looks for 2021 event to run at half capacity
18th August 2020 - NSW Chief Health Officer tightens Coronavirus rules for community sport
10th December 2020 - OneMusic extends live-streaming licence for fitness
2nd December 2020 - Victorian fitness operators call for end to gym restrictions
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