SOUTH Australia has ruled out hosting an AFL hub, shutting its borders to Victorian clubs following a spike in cases in the AFL's heartland.
With 10 Melbourne postcodes identified as coronavirus hotspots, stay-at-home orders are in place for around 300,000 people, prompting the AFL to look at sending its 10 Victorian clubs into interstate hubs after this weekend.
But they won't be shipped off to South Australia.
"There won't be a hub in South Australia this year," South Australian health and wellbeing minister Stephen Wade told SEN SA radio on Friday morning.
"We know that's very disappointing. Australian rules football is a cherished part of Australian life but public health has to come first. We've already seen cases of community transmission from state to state and we need to make sure AFL is not a bridge for that."
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Port Adelaide and Adelaide have been based in a Gold Coast-hub since round three, and were fixtured to travel to Victoria in round seven, although that schedule is set to be scrapped as the AFL scrambles to deal with the latest border restrictions placed on Victoria.
It now leaves the Power and Crows in limbo with the Minister declaring the South Australian clubs would have to quarantine for 14-days if they were to return home after playing a Victorian side
"We're keen to work with the AFL to explore all options," Wade said.
"We are keen for there to be an AFL season this year but in the context of Victoria being the hub of coronavirus infection at the moment, and also the base for the majority of the AFL teams, that's a very challenging environment for public health clinicians. South Australia has indicated we won't be giving exemptions from the 14 day isolation requirement.
"The advice I have is that South Australian clubs that play a Victorian team in any location will need to quarantine for two weeks. The premier has indicated there won't be a hub in South Australia and there won't be exemptions to isolation rules."
Hubs in WA and NSW are expected to go ahead.
The AFL is expected to release the next batch of games on Friday.