Russian tennis star Andrey Rublev says he was allowed to enter the country for the Australian Open despite having Covid.
The 24-year-old contracted the virus before his arrival and was still testing positive when he touched down in Australia.
‘When I flew to Australia, I was still positive, but the level of Covid SS, as it is called, I will not lie, it was very low and not dangerous,’ he told Sport Klub.
‘I was allowed to enter the country. In addition, I spent more than ten days in quarantine.’
Rublev said he is no longer being tested as he has recovered from the virus, having tested positive on December 27.
Russian tennis star Andrey Rublev has said he was allowed to enter Victoria for the Australian Open despite having Covid
Following his positive test, Rublev announced on Twitter that he was fully vaccinated and was isolating ahead of the tournament.
‘I have minimal symptoms. I am in isolation and following all the protocols under the supervision of doctors,” he said.
‘Now I have to recover and I will go to Melbourne only when it will be safe for everyone. I am very upset and concerned about what is happening
‘I will return to the court as soon as possible.’
According to the Australian government’s health department website, international travelers who have had Covid and have recovered but are still testing positive are able to apply for a medical exemption.
Rublev said he is no longer being tested as he has recovered from the virus, having tested positive on December 27
At check-in they must provide a negative PCR test result taken no more than three days before their flight and a certificate from their medical practitioner.
The certificate must include ‘a statement to the effect that the person has had the coronavirus known as Covid‑19 but is now recovered and is not considered to be infectious’.
It must also show that 14 days has passed since the first positive PCR test and the person has not been experiencing symptoms in the past 72 hours.
‘If your Covid-19 PCR test result is positive and you do not have a certificate that states the above information, you and any primary close contacts in your traveling group, should not go to the airport as you will be prevented from boarding,’ the website says.
The shock revelation comes after world No.1 Novak Djokovic was kicked out of the country after his vaccination exemption was denied.
The official reasons for why Novak Djokovic (pictured at Melbourne Airport after the ruling) was deported from Australia have been published by the Federal Court, with judges siding with Immigration Minister Alex Hawke on all grounds
The 34-year-old faced a lengthy legal battle to try and stay in the country but was ultimately deported back to Serbia on Sunday night.
In a judgment handed down last Thursday, the Federal Court found it was clearly open Immigration Minister Alex Hawke to find that Djokovic had refused to get vaccinated before entering Australia.
That’s even despite Djokovic’s claims he couldn’t get vaccinated before entering Australia as he had contracted Covid-19 on December 16.
The court also found Minister Hawke was right to be concerned that Djokovic’s position on vaccines could encourage anti-vaccine sentiment in Australia.
Djokovic’s presence in Australia ‘may encourage rallies and protests that may lead to heightened community transmission’, the judges said.
The tennis ace originally had his visa canceled upon his arrival at Melbourne Airport on January 5 for inconsistencies in his declaration form granting him an exception for not being vaccinated against Covid.
He was then detained before successfully winning an appeal, only to have Mr Hawke use his discretionary powers to cancel the visa once more.
Djokovic took the matter to the Federal Court in a last ditch bid to compete in the Australian Open, on the hunt for his 10th title at the tournament.
But Judges agreed that the Immigration Minister needed to be satisfied of the potential risk to the ‘health, safety or good order’ of the community.
The tennis ace (pictured with wife Jelena) originally had his visa canceled upon his arrival at Melbourne Airport on January 5 for inconsistencies in his declaration form granting him an exception for not being vaccinated against Covid
‘It is not the fact of Mr Djokovic being a risk to the health, safety or good order of the Australian community; rather it is whether the Minister was satisfied that his presence is or may be or would or might be such a risk for the purposes of (the Migration Act).
‘The satisfaction of the Minister is not an unreviewable personal state of mind. The law is clear as to what is required.
‘If, upon review by a court, the satisfaction is found to have been reached unreasonably or was not capable of having been reached on proper material or lawful grounds, it will be taken not to be a lawful satisfaction for the purpose of the statute. ‘
Rublev will face off with Marin Cilic in the third round of the Australian Open on Saturday.
Djokovic (pictured with wife, Jelena) was deported back to Serbia on Sunday night