One tests positive to COVID-19 in Hunters’ travel team

The SP PNG Hunters team’s scheduled travel to Queensland today (February 7, 2021) has been delayed because one of the traveling members has tested positive to COVID-19.

PNGRFL Acting CEO Stanley Hondina issued a statement today, and on Thursday February 4, at 5pm, all 34 players and staff entered the prearranged quarantine bubble as outlined in the Quarantine Plan provided to Queensland Health Authority (QHA) and underwent PCR testing.


“The results of the tests were received on Friday February 5, 2021 and with the exception of one member whose result was classified as ‘inconclusive’, all were negative,” Hondina said.


“The member was immediately isolated pending further investigations and testings.”


He said further tests with the GenXpert machine, returned a positive result at 10.00pm Saturday February 6, 2021.


Travel has now been delayed by seven days to, next Sunday February 14, 2021.


Hondina said, “Due to privacy, I cannot at this time disclose the affected individuals name but be assured he is being cared for and that we are focused on the wellbeing of all members.


He said the travelling team was addressed by QRL staff this morning via a teleconference call who reiterated the importance of maintaining safe hygiene practices, use of hand sanitiser, wearing of masks, social distancing & remaining in the quarantine bubble.


Hondina said the team will remain in the quarantine environment and will be monitored daily for any Covid like symptoms with further directions from the medical team of the possibility of undergoing during the week if required and again on Friday February 12, 2021, to comply with the 72 hour pre- flight requirement.


“We are 100% committed to the health and wellbeing of the Hunters, the Intrust Super Cup teams we will play against, and the broader community in Queensland,” Hondina said.


“This is why we have made the decision for the travelling team to extend quarantine for another seven (7) days.”


Hondina added that Prime Minister James Marape and all stakeholders in PNG and Queensland have been made aware of this ‘unfortunate’ situation.


Meanwhile SP PNG Hunters coach Matthew Church said “We are undertaking protocols above and beyond that of which is required for any other persons wanting to leave PNG. Support is being provided to all of our players and staff within the program at this time.”


He said, “As a team we know that a setback for an individual is a setback for the team. We might be separated from one of our brothers during this process but we are all going through this situation together, we stand united as a group.”

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