THERE has been another twist in the Conor McKenna story, after the Essendon defender's latest COVID-19 test returned negative on Tuesday. 

AFL.com.au has confirmed the Irishman had a follow-up test following his positive reading on Saturday that has cleared him of the virus. 

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It follows a 'low grade' irregularity within his test on Friday and a negative test last Wednesday. 

It also leaves some confusion around the next phase of his isolation given the one positive reading sitting between negative results. 

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McKenna is understood to have remained in good health in recent days and is positive about a return to the field.

Earlier on Tuesday it was announced that only one other Bomber – forward James Stewart – would be forced to self-isolate for 14 days after being judged as the only player to have had 'close contact' with McKenna last Friday. 

Stewart was McKenna's wrestling partner in a drill at the club's Tullamarine headquarters after the Department of Health and Human Services scoured training footage.

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Stewart was also re-tested on Monday afternoon and his test returned a negative result on Tuesday morning.

His manager Peter Jess said the process of isolation, which is predicated on a player returning a positive test, was now complicated for Stewart, who is likely to undergo another test on Wednesday.

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"The club has said that James still has to be subjected to two more tests," Jess said. 

"But what I'm struggling with is if the science tells us that the guy is a negative and that somehow he's recovered in 48 hours of being positive of the virus that this is some feat. 

"James has tested negative, negative, negative right through the testing regime."