Two Fiji rugby stars arrested for flouting coronavirus isolation rules
6 April, 2020, 2:19 pm
Two Fiji rugby players have been arrested for ignoring coronavirus self-isolation rules with authorities blasting their “irresponsible and unacceptable” behaviour.
The players have not been named but AFP reports the Fiji Rugby Union confirmed they were professionals. Local media reported them to be sevens players and internationals.
“For those of you that have chosen not to respect the mandatory 14 day self isolation, shame on you and each of you will have your day of reckoning,” Fiji Rugby’s high-performance manager and former international Simon Raiwalui posted on Facebook at the weekend.
Prime Minister Frank Bainimarama felt the players had put “the whole of Fiji at risk”. He said one player, who arrived from Singapore, “had a high risk of exposure to the virus while overseas” and then escaped from isolation in a Fiji hospital.
“Unlucky for him he couldn’t step his way past our Fiji police force. He has been arrested and is in isolation at Nadi hospital,” Bainimarama said.
Fiji Rugby Union chief executive John O’Connor said they would take “appropriate disciplinary actions against the professional rugby players, including reporting this highly irresponsible behaviour to their clubs and World Rugby”.
“The Fiji rugby family wants to put on record our great disappointment at the irresponsible behaviour of these two players putting their families and other Fijians at risk,” O’Connor said.
“Such irresponsible behaviour is totally unacceptable, and we support the actions of the police in arresting these two players and any further action taken against them.”
Fiji are the Olympic sevens champions after winning the inaugural gold medal at Rio 2016.
They are third in the current world series which has been put on hold because of the coronavirus pandemic.