Lions, Suns to accept hardline vax stance
THE entire Brisbane Lions cohort joined the rest of the AFL on Wednesday in wholesale testing for coronavirus.
All players and staff, except for Irishman James Madden - who is not back in the country yet - were tested for COVID-19 at the Gabba as per the league's nationwide testing protocol.
Similar scenes occurred on the Gold Coast and in Melbourne.
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It also comes as all Queensland-based AFL players will be forced to get the flu vaccination to be able to play in the upcoming season, as the state government stands firm on its no jab, no play policy.
Both the Lions and Gold Coast Suns have confirmed all players have agreed to get the flu vaccination.
All but two Brisbane players were up to date with their flu shot, with those two remaining players expected to get the jab on Thursday.
Lions captain Dayne Zorko said there had never been an issue among the playing group relating to flu vaccinations.
"We've been getting flu shots ever since I've been at the football club," Zorko said.
"The doctors have always come in and given us our flu shots and there's never really been an eyebrow raised.
"All the boys obliged and got their flu shots.
"Really pleased to see the boys are switched on. It just goes to show the mindset that they're in.
"They want to get back out and quickly as possible."
Gold Coast chief executive Mark Evans said the club's players had shown no opposition to the vaccination.
"We've been working very hard with the AFL to make sure that we comply with all of the directions of each jurisdiction," Evans said.
"Here in Queensland we've been following the chief health minister's advice and all of our players so far have had their flu shot.
"I think there might be a couple still to go - some players that were in Victoria that have returned here missed that initial time frame but that should be done by the end of (Wednesday)."
It is welcome relief for the Suns to have their players cleared to return to the club before training resumes as early as next week.
Two players, Bryce Cartwright and Brian Kelly, have been stood down by the Gold Coast's NRL team, the Titans, due to their refusal to be vaccinated.