June 13, 2020 / 2:25 AM / a month ago

Rugby league-NRL asks reporter to have COVID test after player interview - report

SYDNEY, June 13 (Reuters) - A second journalist within a week will have to undergo a coronavirus test after breaching social distancing rules by failing to observe a two-metre gap from players in Australia’s National Rugby League (NRL), local media reported on Saturday.

Fox Sports’ Hannah Hollis interviewed North Queensland Cowboys’ Valentine Holmes on the sidelines after he injured an ankle in Friday’s game against the New Zealand Warriors.

Hollis leaned across a fence surrounding the playing area as she interviewed Holmes and the Sydney Morning Herald said the league had asked her to undergo a COVID-19 test.

Stringent health rules have been put in place to minimise the risk of players contracting the novel coronavirus during the competition, which was the first to resume in Australia following the shutdown.

Earlier this week, Michelle Bishop, a reporter for Seven News in Sydney, also underwent a test after Wests Tigers playmaker Benji Marshall greeted her with a peck on the cheek at training on Wednesday.

Bishop tested negative and Marshall was allowed to return to his team after initially being sent home.

NRL players have been isolated in ‘bubbles’ and are routinely tested.

Sydney side Canterbury were handed a A$25,000 ($17,500) suspended fine for a biosecurity breach after a former player visited training and shook hands with squad members.

Reporting by Greg Stutchbury in Wellington; Editing by Peter Rutherford

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