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Palermo tennis chief pleads for Halep quarantine exemption

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Rome (AFP)

Simona Halep's bid to play the Palermo WTA event, which will mark the season's resumption after a five-month suspension, could be dashed by demands that all Romanians enter quarantine on arrival in Italy.

Organisers of the clay court event, starting on August 3, are pleading with government officials to lift the self-isolation requirement for Wimbledon champion Halep.

"We have sent an urgent letter to the Minister of Health Roberto Speranza to request an exemption from the ordinance for the players who will participate in the tournament," said tournament director Oliviero Palma.

The Minister of Health had announced that he had signed an order on Friday imposing a 14-day quarantine on entry into Italy for all those who had been in Romania and Bulgaria during the previous two weeks.

"This decision would penalise a player like Simona Halep, the world number two and Wimbledon title holder, who could no longer participate in the Palermo tournament," added Palma.

Palma said he was "convinced that the health protocols adopted by the WTA are strict enough to ensure the safety and health of the athletes but also of all those involved in the event."

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