Austria’s sport could soon breathe a sigh of relief. On Friday there will be a big summit, at which a decision will be made about possible openings.
The sport has stood still for a long time in days of lockdown. In many areas, especially indoor, only top athletes are allowed to train. Fitness centers are closed, team sports are in the amateur area. That could soon change, at least in part.
The sports summit will take place on Friday. Representatives of Sport Austria, the umbrella organizations, meet with Sports Minister Werner Kogler and Health Minister Rudolf Anschober (both Greens). A step-by-step opening to amateur sport should also be discussed. In other words, with appropriate hygiene concepts, recreational athletes could have new opportunities in the foreseeable future.
With “Ö1”, Kogler gives them hope. However, he warns that tests and measures such as distance or safety masks could well be included in the concepts. “If you have physical contact in outdoor team sports, it will need a test.” The Vice Chancellor emphasized that Austria was “still sitting on a powder keg”. What are meant are the increasing numbers of corona infections. In view of these statements, fitness centers should still have little hope of opening up quickly.
Sport demands openness
Sport Austria boss Hans Niessl vehemently insists on openings, referring to entry tests as a suitable instrument. One example of how tense the mood in the associations is now is the local tennis association. He published an open letter on Monday, addressed to Kogler and Anschober. ÖTV President Magnus Brunner and the presidents of the regional associations write about arguments for opening tennis halls. Around 400,000 amateur tennis players and hall operators in Austria would be hit hard by the measures currently in force, it is said.
Among other things, reference is made to the low risk of infection in tennis halls, according to “www.corona-rechner.at”: “If all safety requirements that can be met without any problems (no showering, no changing, no catering, face mask until you enter the court), tennis is extremely safe According to the corona calculator, the risk of infection is between 0.2-0.3 for 4 people per seat, and is even half lower for individuals. ” With arguments like these it should work on Friday to convince the government members of the first steps in opening up sport.