Australian Open crowds capped at 50% capacity due to COVID
Crowds at the Australian Open tennis will be capped at 50 percent capacity under updated COVID-19 restrictions, the Victorian state government said on Thursday, as authorities battle a surge of cases in Melbourne.
Face masks will be mandatory for all patrons, except when eating or drinking, and there will be a limit of one person per 2 square meters at indoor hospitality venues, the government said in a statement.
"These updates to arrangements for the Australian Open will mean that fans, players and the workforce can look forward to a terrific COVID-safe event," acting sport minister Jaala Pulford said.
Victoria reported 37,169 new cases of COVID-19 on Thursday and 25 deaths.
The tally is slightly down from Wednesday's 40,127.
The buildup to the Open, which starts on Monday, has been overshadowed by doubt surrounding the participation of men's world champion Novak Djokovic.