Australian Open: Rubella vaccination for players means tournament organisers have ‘to look at ways to minimise risk’

Tennis Australia CEO Craig Tiley is a former world number 10, twice a Davis Cup player and an Olympic gold medallist Australian Open 2017 Dates: 14-27 January Venue: Melbourne Park Coverage: Live commentary on…

Australian Open: Rubella vaccination for players means tournament organisers have 'to look at ways to minimise risk'

Tennis Australia CEO Craig Tiley is a former world number 10, twice a Davis Cup player and an Olympic gold medallist

Australian Open 2017 Dates: 14-27 January Venue: Melbourne Park Coverage: Live commentary on BBC Radio 5 live sports extra, selected BBC TV and online streams.

Players participating in the Australian Open must be vaccinated against rubella as a precaution against possible complications, says tournament director Craig Tiley.

All tennis players receive a “routine and quite safe” vaccine against it, but the country’s tennis community must now get overtowd with the fight against the virus.

Tiley cited the death of French Open semi-finalist Dominika Cibulkova’s unborn child as a reason for making the change.

“We don’t want to be taking unnecessary risks,” he said.

Australian Open finalist Cibulkova’s daughter, Angelika Rose, died last month, days after the Slovakian flew to Australia for the grass-court event.

Several female players took her on tour to play the final Australian Open warm-up event and were struck down with the virus at the same time.

Holder Angelique Kerber has also been hospitalised in Melbourne, although she missed the tournament on Sunday as she recovers.

“We certainly want to make sure, given the recent impact that Rubella has had on tennis, we put whatever changes we can in place to minimize the risk,” said Tiley.

The tournament director’s comments come after the head of the Professional Tennis Players Association (PTPA) pointed out that people in the world’s major cities are not immunised from rubella.

Victoria Azarenka, the world number seven, said: “You’ll feel a lot more confident if you know all of your city, if you live there.

“I live in New York – I know people that live there and not everyone gets vaccinated. That’s just like a culture thing.”

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