TWO RICHMOND players have tested positive to COVID-19.
Midfielder Dion Prestia and defender Noah Balta are currently isolating after contracting the virus, Richmond confirmed on Saturday evening. Close contacts of the pair are being tested.
A person who tests positive for COVID in Victoria needs to isolate for 10 days, while those who have a positive case in their household need to isolate for seven days.
Balta is returning from a syndesmosis injury which ruled him out of the last eight games of the season, while Prestia also battled various niggles in 2021 and only managed nine games.
It's expected that first-to-fourth-year Richmond players will be able to start their pre-season training as planned on Monday.
Hawthorn's Finn Maginness contracted the virus a few weeks ago, and was the League's first confirmed case in a player in more than a year.
On Friday the Victorian Government eased isolation rules which significantly reduced the length of time players in the state were forced away from clubs.
Close contacts in Victoria are now only required to isolate until they produce a negative PCR test, rather than isolate for seven days from the point of exposure.
Already this pre-season, Richmond and Western Bulldogs AFLW sides have missed a week of training due to single positive tests among their programs.
There was also a positive case in Carlton's AFLW side, but no overlap between the person's infectious period and training sessions meant the team has continued to train as normal, aside from one close contact.
There have been questions from clubs about what will happen if a player or staff member tests positive during the season and the ability to field a side for a match is affected as a consequence, but the AFL is yet to settle on a policy.
However, the new government rules will greatly diminish the likelihood of Victorian sides being forced to miss or reschedule games due to the need to isolate.