He’s the COVID-positive coach who forced 24 Aus Open players into lockdown, but Eddie Elliott’s been released from quarantine before them.
He’s the COVID-positive coach who forced 24 Aus Open players into lockdown, but Eddie Elliott’s been released from quarantine before them.

Quarantined tennis stars fume as coach released early

The first person to record a positive coronavirus test among the Australian Open's charter flight crew is out of quarantine - and the players aren't happy.

Edward 'Eddie' Elliott, who coaches American player Lauren Davis, was on the Los Angeles plane that arrived in Melbourne two Fridays ago and was subsequently revealed as the positive case on board.

 

Elliott coaches Australian Open hopeful Lauren Davis. Picture: Michael Klein
Elliott coaches Australian Open hopeful Lauren Davis. Picture: Michael Klein

The remaining 78 people on the flight, including 24 players, were identified as close contacts and forced into mandatory 14-day hard quarantine.

However, Elliott has since been released from quarantine after serving 10 days and is no longer deemed a risk.

His status dominated discussion in Australian Open tournament director Craig Tiley's player briefing on Monday night, with veteran American Bethanie Mattek-Sands believed to be the most vocal.

Elliott didn't need to have another COVID-19 test, because he may continue to record positive test results for an extended period, which is referred to as non-infectious 'viral shedding'.

The other passengers on the flight still have to complete their 14 days.

Victoria's chief health officer, Brett Sutton, clarified a fortnight ago how long the infectious period lasted.

"People with COVID-19 are understood to be infectious from 1-2 days before symptoms until a maximum of 10 days after, if symptoms have resolved," Sutton tweeted.

"But why isn't a negative test a REQUIREMENT for release from iso? Because for those people, the test can remain positive for days, or weeks, or sometimes months."

There are 72 players in total in 'hard' quarantine and the mandatory period is set to expire on Friday and Sunday, depending on when their flights landed in Australia.

Originally published as Quarantined tennis stars fume as coach released early


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