Fremantle Docker Switkowski Cleared of COVID-19

March 10, 2020Australia
Fremantle Docker Switkowski Cleared of COVID-19
Sam Switkowski of the Dockers is seen in action during the Round 14 AFL match between the Melbourne Demons and the Fremantle Dockers at the MCG in Melbourne on June 22, 2019. (AAP Image/Julian Smith)

The Fremantle Dockers are breathing a sigh of relief after forward Sam Switkowski was cleared of having the coronavirus.

Switkowski was tested on Monday after suffering from flu-like symptoms.

That came after he had contact with a friend who had been in China earlier this year.

According to Switkowski, the friend underwent a 14-day isolation period after returning to Australia, during which he suffered no flu-like symptoms.

The friend then travelled to Perth to visit Switkowski.

Fremantle received good news on Tuesday when the test result showed negative for the coronavirus.

“Given the club’s position in the community, we made a decision on Monday afternoon to take a very conservative approach even though the player did not fit all the WA Health Department criteria for COVID-19 testing,” Fremantle chief executive Simon Garlick said.

“We understand the high level of interest surrounding one of our players being sent for precautionary testing for COVID-19.

“The facts are that the player presented with flu-like symptoms after being in contact with a friend who had visited China, even though that person had self-isolated for 14 days following his return to the country and hadn’t displayed any symptoms of the virus.

“It was another two weeks after the isolation period that the friend visited the player late last month.

“We felt it was important to be proactive and diligent to ensure the safety of our players, staff and broader community.”

Dockers captain Nat Fyfe said he expected the scare to be the start of something much bigger in 2020.

“At the moment it (the virus) is in its infancy and it’s just starting to affect people,” he said.

“We’re remaining calm, stepping through the protocol and the doctors have told us not to stress too much.”

By Justin Chadwick and David Smith

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