Coronavirus Sees Chinese Football Team Quarantined In Brisbane Hotel
China's women's football team has been quarantined in Brisbane after arriving for the Olympic qualifiers, which had been moved to Australia due to coronavirus fears.
Experienced midfielder Wang Shuang and 22-year-old Yao Wei were among several absentees when the Steel Roses squad arrived in Brisbane.
The pair were among a group of at least four players who returned to their native Wuhan for Chinese New Year when the city was placed in lockdown following the outbreak of the virus.
A team official told AAP Wang and Yao were unable to come to Australia due to travel restrictions.
The players will remain at home in isolation and under observation but it's understood none have shown any related symptoms of the virus.
Wuhan was the original location for the Group B fixtures in the final round of Asian qualifiers for this year's Olympics.
The match against Australia was moved to Brisbane after fears about the virus grew.
But the team members and staff who have arrived in Australia has been put into isolation in their Brisbane hotel. Queensland's health department is working closely with the team's management and the hotel.
"(This is) to ensure they are appropriately isolated from other guests as well as staff and to ensure protocols are put in place to check their health and to keep them well," QLD Health Minister Steven Miles said.
Wang Shuang of China. Image: Getty
Wang has played over 100 matches for China, scoring 28 goals, while Yao was a member of last year's World Cup squad and has made 22 international appearances.
The six group matches also featuring Australia, Thailand and Taiwan were originally relocated to Nanjing and then Sydney after China withdrew as hosts.
However, Football Federation Australia announced on Wednesday evening ticket sales would be postponed due to updated advice from Australia’s Chief Medical Officer, Professor Brendan Murphy, regarding the coronavirus.
"This major new development confirmed that health experts believe the coronavirus is contagious before people show symptoms, and contacts of any confirmed cases must now be isolated following exposure," the FFA said.
"As a result of these developments, which came to light following today‘s match schedule announcements, FFA will not be going on sale tomorrow with tickets for the tournament."
The Chinese team trained in isolation in Suzhou before departing for Australia and, along with staff, they all underwent testing before departure.
The team are due in Sydney on Friday for the tournament opener against Thailand at Campbelltown Stadium on Monday.
"They went through all the same checks that any Chinese national flying in from China would have gone through," FFA chief executive James Johnson said.
"We're confident in the government's checks and balances."
China's second match will be against Taiwan at Campbelltown next Thursday before facing the Matildas at Bankwest Stadium on Sunday, February 9.