Covid-19 Update 18th March 2020

The Board of Fencing New Zealand is monitoring the fast-moving Covid-19 situation daily and it will continue to publish these advisory notices as required.


The most important recommendation to our members is to follow the advice and guidance of the Ministry of Health (MoH).  This advice will potentially change daily, so we recommend the web site as an important source.

Reluctantly a decision was made last night to postpone the South Island Championships and the National under 15 and Cadet Championships, this followed the recent decision to postpone the Oceania Under 20 Championships.

Whilst this was a hard decision, we believe it is the right one given the number of athletes, coaches and supporters traveling to these events.  It is likely the decision would have been made for us sometime soon and we wanted to give all affected as much notice as possible.

At this point Fencing New Zealand is not recommending the closure of clubs or the postponement of regional or club competitions.  This position will be reviewed daily and may change given the expected Government guidance on smaller gatherings expected in the next few days, or any new cases prove to be community spread.

Fencing New Zealand will however support any local decision to close clubs or postpone local competitions due to a local concern or event.

Until further notice attendance at clubs and local competitions needs to be in line with the revised guidelines were issued by the Ministry of Health over the weekend.

Anyone arriving from the following countries will be required to self-isolate for a period of 14 days -

Category 1a Countries - travel bans in place

  • Mainland China
  • Iran

Category 1b Countries - no travel bans in place

  • All countries not named in category 1a or 2

Those who have travelled from the following areas will need to self-isolate if they become symptomatic -

Category 2 Countries

  • Cook Islands
  • Fiji
  • Kiribati
  • Marshall Islands
  • Federated States of Micronesia
  • Nauru
  • New Caledonia
  • Niue
  • Palau
  • Papua New Guinea
  • Samoa
  • Solomon Islands
  • Tonga
  • Tuvalu
  • Vanuatu
  • Tokelau
  • Wallis and Futuna

Fencing New Zealand has taken the following position and recommends the following people DO NOT visit NZ Fencing clubs or attend regional or club competitions until further notice.

  • Anyone returning from category 1a, 1b countries in the last 14 days (MoH directive)
  • Anyone who has had close contact with someone who has returned from category 1a, 1b country in the last 14 days
  • Anyone who has returned from category 2 countries in the last 14 days who has cold / flu symptoms (MoH directive)
  • Anyone who has had close contact with someone who has returned from category 2 countries who has developed symptoms in the last 14 days
  • Anyone currently feeling unwell or displaying cold/flu symptoms. These people should remain away from venues until completely well. (MoH directive)

The most important modes of restricting viral spread is using hand soap, hand washing from the wrists down for at least 20 seconds and thoroughly dry hands. Avoid contact thereafter with face, nose and eyes, as they are the portals of entry for the virus.

Please refrain from physical contact and remember not to shake hands after each bout.

Try to maintain interpersonal distance of 1 sword length (1metre), and if you cough or sneeze, do so into the crook of your elbow.

Surgical masks are pretty poor protection on their own if you do not have symptoms but are much more effective to prevent infection spreading if worn by those infected but must be very close fitting.

When attending fencing clubs or competitions, avoid sharing fencing masks and gloves and clean them regularly.

Please watch out for more updates on the Fencing New Zealand website and Facebook page.

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