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Roosters return negative tests; COVID protocols back after Sydney cases

Sydney Roosters players have all returned negative results after undergoing COVID-19 tests on Thursday.

The Roosters playing squad and staff were tested ahead of Friday night's match against Parramatta after a number of venues near the club's headquarters at Moore Park were visited by a confirmed case on Monday.

Among them was a cafe frequented by Roosters players but it is understood they were having lunch in Bondi at the time the man, aged in his 50s, attended the venue at the Entertainment Quarter.

NRL players have returned to level three COVID protocols following two positive cases in Sydney's eastern suburb.

The NRL advised clubs of the restrictions after the NSW Government announced a raft of measures for the Greater Sydney area from 5pm Thursday until 12.01am Monday.

Staff at the club were told to work from home on Thursday.

Players will be restricted from visiting crowded venues, such as shopping centres, attending family gatherings and using public transport after the NRL re-introduced the level three protocols. 

Players, staff and officials at all Sydney-based clubs as well as the Melbourne Storm, who are currently in Sydney, must remain at home unless training, exercising or shopping for essential needs.

There will also be restrictions in place at games, with venues divided into clean and dirty zones and media prohibited from entering dressing rooms. Temperature testing will take place at matches and players and officials must provide a daily report of their whereabouts.

"These are strong measures to ensure our players remain healthy and the competition can proceed without interruption,'' NRL CEO Andrew Abdo said.

"We are hopeful Level 3 restrictions will only be implemented for a short time, but it is important to take this step as a safeguard measure, particularly with all clubs travelling to Brisbane next week.

"The restrictions we have put in place also reduces the risk of a player attending a venue which may lead them to being identified as a close or casual contact."

With all teams due to travel to Brisbane next weekend for Magic Round and the opening State of Origin match to be played at the MCG on June 9, the NRL is monitoring the situation closely.

After implementing protocols to ensure the 2020 season was completed without incident, including using chartered planes for teams to fly in and out of interstate matches, the NRL has contingency plans in place for almost any scenario.

Any further cases in Sydney are unlikely to impact on the number of fans allowed to attend Suncorp Stadium for Magic Round or Origin I in Melbourne.

Acknowledgement of Country

National Rugby League respects and honours the Traditional Custodians of the land and pay our respects to their Elders past, present and future. We acknowledge the stories, traditions and living cultures of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples on the lands we meet, gather and play on.

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