Professional sport to start again in Sweden after coronavirus ban

Professional sport to start again in Sweden after coronavirus ban
The decision applies to all sports, but they must take place outdoors with no spectators. Photo: Pontus Lundahl / TT
Elite sports will be able to start up again from June 14th in Sweden, with no spectators, the government announced on Friday.

The decision applies to all forms of sport, and at all levels, as long as the recommendations of the Public Health Agency can be followed.

That means that matches must take place outside and comply with the restrictions in place for public events, including a ban on gatherings over 50 people. All participants must be free of any cold- or flu-like symptoms.

“The decision to allow sport without spectators should not be seen as us rolling back the recommendations,” cautioned Minister for Culture and Sport Amanda Lind at Friday's press conference.

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Players will also be allowed to travel to reach the games, said the Public Health Agency's general director Johan Carlson.

“We are opening up to necessary travel for professionals at the elite level,” Carlson said, explaining that this includes journeys of over two hours.

In general, the current guidance is to avoid all non-essential travel of more than one to two hours by car, and Carlson said this remained the recommendation for members of the public.

He added that the limit on public events for over 50 people would stay in place throughout the summer, meaning it will be a long time before spectators can attend games or matches in person.

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