Seeing fans and interaction at a sporting event was something we haven’t been used to and was good to see a bit of an old normal but an old normal which came with a risk and didn’t sit completely right.
I’ve always said that if you follow the guidance of the country you are in then it is up to those who play, attend and organise these events but it’s a major risk. Population is different in Serbia and Croatia as it is here in the UK or US but the risk is still the same.
Now, the risk is a reality.
About 20 minutes before the final of the Adria Tour leg in Zadar between Novak Djokovic and Andrey Rublev, Grigor Dimitrov announced on Instagram he had tested positive for coronavirus.
Dimitrov looked out of sorts on Saturday in his match and withdrew from the proceedings.
The final was due to begin at 8pm local time in Zadar but players did not emerge to a full stadium. Instead Goran Ivanisevic arrived to address the crowd to inform them of Grigor’s positive test and that the final has been cancelled.
Throughout the event the players have been mixing with each other, going on nights out and mixing with fans at a non socially distanced manner.
If this event wants to continue in the safest manner it must do behind closed doors no matter the guidelines in place at these destinations.
There is a reason the returning tennis tour is behind played behind closed doors to offer a safe environment for all players and staff.
I will be shocked to see it return on the 3rd and 4th of July in Banja Luka unless it is behind closed door regardless of the situation, it’s careless.
There was meant to be another leg in Montenegro but it was cancelled a week ago following a ban on travel and events to the country.
What else are they going to do? If it continues being soo close and loose on social distancing there will be more cancellations and positive tests.
—— UPDATE ——
On Monday morning, Borna Coric confirmed a positive test for Coronavirus.
Borna can be seen below with Grigor Dimitrov having played against each other on Saturday and both have now confirmed positive tests.
Nick Kyrgios who has been vocally against these events taking place in a pandemic called the idea ‘bone head’ and wishes the players well. It is believed two coaching staff (one of Djokovic and one of Dimitrov’s) have also tested positive
24 hours on there is yet to be a statement from Novak Djokovic who organised the tour, it is understood the world number one has returned to Serbia without a test.
This event is an exhibition event put on by a player and not an ATP, WTA or ITF event but the ATP have released a statement:
Sascha Zverev has confirmed a negative test but is going to self-isolate, as is Marin Cilic, both of whom took part this weekend in Zadar.
Andrey Rublev who made it to the final of the event in Zadar this weekend will also self-isolate
Dominic Thiem was in action in the first weekend of the event in Belgrade and was close to Grigor Dimitrov.
Dominic was playing an exhibition in France over the weekend but tested negative on arrival but as we know it can incubate in you before symptoms and a positive test is recorded. 2 hours after the positive test from Dimitrov last night still played his match in France against Tsitsipas.