NOVAK DJOKOVIC - ADRIA TOUR EVENT RISKS CONFIDENCE REBUILD
The recent headlines generated by the Novak Djokovic - Adria Tour event highlights the need to ensure events contribute towards the rebuilding of confidence back into the sports event industry rather than undermining it for short term goals.
The risks are plain to see from the immediate outcome of the ill-prepared event held in Serbia. The impacts include professional athletes testing positive for COVID19, as well as the potential for infections to event staff, spectators and the wider community.
But beyond the immediate, the incident serves to highlight the damage that poorly planned or managed events can have on a sport, its stakeholders and the events industry at large.
The BBC News reported British men's number one Dan Evans says Novak Djokovic should "feel some responsibility" after Grigor Dimitrov, Borna Coric and Viktor Troicki all tested positive for Covid-19 after playing at his Adria Tour event.
Andy Murray says it has been a "lesson for us all."
"Once you start having mass gatherings with people coming in from all sorts of countries, it's a recipe for it to kick off," he said, as he prepares for this week's Schroders Battle of the Brits. "So it's kind of a lesson for all of us - if we weren't already - to take this extremely seriously, and to have as many safety measures in place as possible."
The organisers of the Adria Tour say Sunday's final in Zadar was cancelled "as a precaution and to protect the health of all participants and visitors".
The ATP, the governing body of men's tennis, said it "continues to urge strict adherence to responsible social distancing and health and safety guidelines to contain the spread of the virus".
It added: "In planning for the resumption of the ATP Tour season from 14 August, ATP and other stakeholders have made exhaustive plans to mitigate risks through a variety of precautions and protocols to be implemented at ATP events."
The Safe Event Scheme Affiliate Partner Programme offers sports governing bodies the opportunity to align the Safe Event Scheme accreditation process with their own set of protocols and guidance. This enables the events they sanction and support to use the universal Safe Event Scheme assurance mark and to demonstrate their commitment to supporting safe and, importantly, responsible events.