Australian Open bans unvaccinated players ahead of the 2017 tournament

Wang Yafu and his family wave flag before the third round tennis match between Serena Williams of the U.S. and Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova of Russia at the Australian Open tennis tournament in Melbourne, Australia, January…

Australian Open bans unvaccinated players ahead of the 2017 tournament

Wang Yafu and his family wave flag before the third round tennis match between Serena Williams of the U.S. and Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova of Russia at the Australian Open tennis tournament in Melbourne, Australia, January 18, 2017. ( REUTERS/Adnan Abidi)

The Australian Open says it has completely taken steps to ensure players cannot pass up a shot in order to avoid the fact that the target will be mandatory vaccination, state Premier Daniel Andrews confirmed on Tuesday.

Abdur Chowdhury, secretary of Victoria state medical service, told a federal Senate committee in Melbourne on Wednesday that “un-vaccinated players will not be considered for entry” to the upcoming tennis tournament.

“Vaccinated players will not be considered for entry,” Andrews said in a statement on Tuesday, according to the state’s ABC News website. “New vaccines are required for entry, which will mean that players with unvaccinated children will have to miss the tournament.”

He said the government-funded so-called “Pandemic Plus” vaccinations, which began in January, included polio, measles, hepatitis A, diphtheria, mumps, rubella, yellow fever, Japanese encephalitis, hepatitis B, Haemophilus influenzae type b, tetanus and mumps.

Separately, the Tennis Australia Foundation said in a statement that its own “prioritizing” of players with fully vaccinated children would remain an important part of the plan going forward.

Victoria state’s ban comes after a French Open tournament had all unvaccinated players only on the “protected” list, meaning that all players were supposed to receive the recommended vaccinations and recommended boosters in order to compete. A very poor month for tennis players from West Africa was also believed to have contributed to the likelihood of players lacking these vaccinations.

Read the full story at The Guardian.

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