Cricket legend Shane Warne has described Victoria’s harsh quarantine restrictions as “inhuman” and added fuel to a fire that has raged in the cricket world ahead of the summer.
Warne is preparing to return home from London ahead of the ashes and has taken to Twitter to question Victoria’s harsh quarantine restrictions.
Currently, all citizens returning to the state must be quarantined in a hotel room for 14 days upon arrival at their own expense.
While New South Wales is piloting a home quarantine program this month, Victoria does not currently have plans to implement a similar initiative.
Warne, who has double-grown against coronavirus, questioned whether those who have had two jabs should be required to complete what he called “inhuman” hotel quarantine.
“Can I do home quarantine in Victoria now that I’m double vaccinated, or is it still the inhuman 14 day hotel quarantine in a tiny little room that all returning residents have had to do?” tweeted the legendary leg spinner.
According to the state’s roadmap for reopening, changes to international quarantine arrangements will only be considered once 80 percent of Victorians over the age of 16 have been vaccinated.
The Victorian government is set to consider revising its quarantine policy for cross-border arrivals when 70 per cent of Victorians over 16 are double-grown.
As it is now, only 58 percent of Victorians over the age of 16 have had two doses of a Covid-19 vaccine.
Currently, Victorians can apply for quarantine permission at home upon re-entry into the state, but the government does not consider dual vaccination as a justification for granting dispensation.
This summer’s ashes were thrown into doubt after English players expressed concern about spending the holiday season in bubbles away from families and with quarantine for two weeks on arrival in Australia.
The English have played more tests than any other side this year and have since January already traveled to India and Sri Lanka to carry out their trade.
After weeks of negotiations between players, Cricket Australia and England and the Wales Cricket Board (ECB), it was confirmed earlier this week that the ashes would really move on.
Prior to official confirmation that the series would continue, Warne said he had empathy with the English players.
“It’s hard to make a decision (whether to come to Australia) because the states keep changing their rules,” Warne said on Tuesday.
“The first test is in Brisbane and then they have to travel to Adelaide or Perth after that, it is very difficult with the rules, to say they will have to make another 14 days quarantine and then Perth will not let you in .
“It is very difficult for the English players to make a decision while it is constantly changing in every state.”
The impact of Australia’s border restrictions has also been felt at other levels of the game. Brisbane Heat opener Tom Banton was allowed to stay in England despite being contracted by BBL | 11 after referring to concerns about bubble fatigue and hotel quarantine.
Warne is not the first athlete to target the Victorian government’s Covid-19 restrictions.
Golf professionals were abandoned as the sport continued to be banned when Prime Minister Daniel Andrews reintroduced picnics for Victorians last month.
“Just to clarify from tomorrow I can visit my local golf course or tennis club to have a picnic with 4 others or do personal training with one coach and another, but I can not play golf or tennis with each other?” professional golfer Matt Griffin tweeted at the time.
Golf has been allowed throughout New South Wales’ lockdown, but “recreational activities that require the use of a facility” remained off the table for Victorians until the state hit its 80% single-dose target by the end of last month.
Even then, the Andrews government was ridiculed for choosing to ban the use of toilets in golf clubs. The ban was subsequently lifted.