Plans to ensure the Australian Open goes ahead have been finalised.
Plans to ensure the Australian Open goes ahead have been finalised.

Strict guidelines to make Aussie Open a 2021 hit


Anthony Breeze

CIRCLE February 8 as the start date for the Australian Open after organisers where given the green light to proceed after delivering their strict COVID-safe plan.

Restrictions include quarantining for 14 days after arriving in Victoria but some special arrangements have been granted to allow the players to prepare for the Open. This includes receiving a negative test after day 2 of arrival.

All players will be tested regularly with tests taking place on days 1, 3, 7, 10 and 14.

The players also face further restrictions like only training with one hitting partner, being allowed out of their hotel for five hours a day, two hours on court, two hours in the gym and one hour to eat on site.

Players also will only be allowed to take one coach with them to a training session.

Australian Open organisers have left nothing to chance by chartering private flights to get all players here, paying for all quarantine costs including accommodation, food and physio.

Prizemoney has been left alone and the full $71 million will be paid out to players with officials also trying to arrange some redistribution of tour money that would see a first round loser receiving $100,000.

RIP Gary

IPSWICH rugby league has lost its third player in the three Musketeers with the passing of Gary Parcell on Monday morning.

Gary was a local boy who played all his football here in Ipswich and rose through the ranks pulling on the Maroon jersey for Queensland and ultimately the green and gold of Australia. Playing in 1960 was one of his proudest moments when he got to pack down into the scrum with fellow Ipswich players in Dud Beattie and Noel Kelly for Australia and England and France.

Tributes have flown in all week for a man that was tough on the field but a pure gentleman off.

RIP Gary.

Quick thoughts

POSITIVES: 1. The All Blacks returned to form last weekend. However, their gesture of presenting Argentina with a jersey with Maradona on the back before the game is why they are regarded as one of the greatest sporting teams in the world.

2. The BBL starts shortly and if Chris Lynn brings his club form to the big stage then we are in for a super season. He blasted 154 off 55 balls hitting 20 sixes.

3. Mark Kaylee McKeown's name down as a huge chance of claiming gold in Tokyo next year. She has just broken the 200m backstroke world record at the short course event in Brisbane.

Negatives: 1. Drugs again have reared their ugly head in sport with Penrith player Brent Naden the latest to find himself in trouble.

2. The huge spat between Channel 7 and ACB needs to finish quickly or the game will suffer some irreparable damage.

3. Sydney Swans player Elijah Taylor gets sacked after pleading guilty to assaulting his girlfriend. When will players learn that this is totally unacceptable.

Sporting birthdays

1. 1957: Lee Smith - American baseball Hall of Famer who was selected seven times in the MLB All Star team.

2. 1960: Glynis Nunn - Australian athlete who won gold at the 1984 Los Angeles Olympics in the heptathlon.

3. 1963: Sergey Bubka - Ukrainian pole vaulter who won Olympic and world championship gold and set several world records.

4. 1973: Steve Menzies - Manly Sea Eagles forward who holds the record for most tries (180) by a forward in league history.

On this day

1. 1956: Australian swimmer Murray Rose sets a world record in claiming gold at the Melbourne Olympics.

2. 1987: Ivan Lendl wins his third straight ATP Masters Grand Prix defeating Mat Wilander 6-2, 6-2, 6-3.

3. 2007: Brazilian midfielder Kaka is awarded the Ballon d'Or as the world's best player.