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Netball Australia launches investigation, considering sanctions after COVID cancellation chaos

Netball Australia interim chief executive Ron Steiner has announced an investigation into the cancellation of the round-eight Super Netball fixture between West Coast Fever and Melbourne Vixens.

The Fever on Friday claimed the Vixens had refused to board a flight to Perth for the match, which was scheduled for Sunday. Vixens trio Jo Weston, Emily Mannix and Kate Moloney were refused entry to Western Australia due to COVID concerns after having travelled to Byron Bay in NSW from their Sunshine Coast base last week during their bye round.

The Vixens attempted to gain permission for their academy players to travel to WA from Victoria, but their applications were also rejected, leaving them with just eight players able to travel.

The Vixens were given the option of utilising players from other states – such as Queensland or South Australia, which teams have been forced to do in the past – but, according to the Fever, the Vixens turned that offer down.

The game was cancelled in an unprecedented move for Super Netball, leaving the Fever furious. Netball Australia is now working to reschedule the fixture.

The Fever had sold 8000 tickets to the game at the time it was cancelled, with the round eight clash to be their only home game broadcast on Channel Nine.

However, the crowd issue has since become a moot point with the WA Government on Sunday banning crowds at sporting events as it deals with new COVID-19 cases.

Netball Australia has since announced it will launch an investigation into the circumstances that led to the game being called off.

Former Diamonds coach Lisa Alexander said many clubs were upset by the way the situation was handled by the Fever, who released a statement accusing the Vixens of refusing to get on the flight.

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