Last week’s leaked WTA email by Ben Rothenberg has given a strong indication that unvaccinated tennis players might be allowed into Melbourne Park for the 2022 Australian Open despite a continued shut down of the rumours by federal and state governments.
I’m not on board with it, and generally speaking if you want to be a member of the Australian public while you are in Australia, you should have their best interests at heart.
Those best interests are getting the jab and ensuring that Covid-19 never has a stranglehold on our country again.
Most of the players inside both the ATP and WTA top 100 have had the vaccination, but there are a select few that have given no inkling as to whether they have rolled up their sleeves for society.
Yes, Novak, we’re looking at you.
In Melbourne we have been through a torrid time of lockdown, 262 days for those who haven’t heard, so why are some of the players being so stubborn? It beggars belief.
Liverpool manager Jurgen Klopp summed it up perfectly. “If I say I am vaccinated, other people say: 'How can you tell me I should be vaccinated?' It is a little bit like drink-driving,” he said.
“We all probably were in a situation where we had a beer or two and thought we still could drive but [because of] the law, we are not allowed to drive so we don't drive.
“But this law is not there for protecting me when I drink two beers and want to drive, it's for protecting all the other people because I'm drunk and we accept that as a law.”
“I don't understand why that is a limitation of freedom because, if it is, then not being allowed to drink and drive is a limitation of freedom as well.
“I got the vaccination because I was concerned about myself but even more so about everybody around me. If I get [COVID-19] and I suffer from it: my fault. If I get it and spread it to someone else: my fault and not their fault.”
When you hear logic like this it is unfathomable to think why people wouldn’t be getting it besides a critical health reason, but I’ll stop harping on about that.
If unvaccinated players want to enter Melbourne, or Sydney for the ATP Cup, they shouldn’t get the luxuries that the ones who have done their part for the global community.
I’m taking about putting them in bubbles, similar to what the tennis world saw for the 2020 US Open.
Allow them to ply their trade, but ensure they quarantine, undergo mandatory testing and are only allowed to be at their hotel or the courts.
As a nation, we must be strong, so if they come we can’t allow it to be restriction free.
Ideally they would stay away, but if these emails are leaking then we must assume they’ll be here, so let’s ensure that the safety of our public is paramount, after all it’s not hard to book a vaccine appointment.
Listen to The First Serve with Brett Phillips each Monday at 8pm AEDT on 1116AM SEN Melbourne, 1629AM SEN SA / 1170am Sydney or listen live and catch up on the SEN App.
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