COVID probe: Netball NSW facing big bill

Netball Australia has fined Netball NSW after grand finalists, the NSW Swifts and Giants Netball, were found to have not followed COVID-19 reporting guidelines.

Netball NSW will have to pay almost $50,000 after its Super Netball teams, the NSW Swifts and Giants, didn't follow COVID-19 reporting protocols.

A Netball Australia investigation found the Super Netball grand finalists didn't immediately report their links to Victorian exposure sites during the 2021 season, won by the Swifts.

The teams, both owned and operated by Netball NSW, were potentially exposed to the virus while in Melbourne.

Swifts coach Briony Akle and the team physio were required to isolate for 14 days in Adelaide after being identified as close contacts of patrons who attended a Tier 1 exposure site in Melbourne.

The Giants were delayed in departing Adelaide for Brisbane after it was identified a number of players and staff had visited a Tier 1 and Tier 2 exposure site in Melbourne.

Netball NSW was fined $10,000 for the Swifts' delay in reporting their exposure link.

The organisation was also fined $10,000, with the fine suspended for two years, and ordered to pay $37,563 for the Giants additional charter and commercial flights to Queensland.

Netball NSW accepted the penalties for the Swifts and the Giants.

Netball NSW said that, after completing its own investigation, it was pleased that the Swifts' non-compliance was found not to be pre-meditated.

It said the exposure site was not an area of concern at the time the Swifts patrons visited but was subsequently elevated to Tier 1 status by the Victorian government.

Netball NSW CEO Tain Drinkwater acknowledged errors from both teams, but said it was important they were viewed in the context of their circumstances.

"It is clear there were delays in reporting exposure links from both our teams and we take ownership of that," Drinkwater said.

"We accept the financial penalties but welcome the acknowledgement that these were not done out of selfishness or disregard for the competition.

"They were simply human errors made in high pressure and stressful situations and that context is very important."