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Covid-19 outbreak at Kangaroos, North Melbourne vs Essendon, players, Leigh Adams, who tested positive

The Covid-19 outbreak is threatening to derail North Melbourne’s clash with Essendon at Marvel Stadium on Sunday.

Acting coach Leigh Adams and four players have returned positive results after returning to Melbourne from Hobart, including young forward Paul Curtis and former Tiger Callum Coleman-Jones.

Adams is expected to be available to train against the Bombers and a quartet of players will be assessed later this week before a decision is made on their status.

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All players and staff who traveled to Tasmania have been asked to stay at home on Monday and practice will resume on Tuesday.

It’s the second time in a month that Essendon have taken advantage of a lower opponent’s strength after Brisbane lost five players ahead of the clubs’ Round 17 clash.

Exciting first-year forward Paul Curtis is one of many Kangaroos to test positive for Covid-19. Image: Getty ImagesSource: Getty Images

The end of the season hurt the Kangaroos’ hopes of ending a difficult season on a positive note; The in-form Bombers picked up their fifth win in their last seven games.

A brilliant finish from Magpie Jamie Elliott denied Essendon another win at the weekend.

North’s recruitment team will be looking to add more mature players to their roster this season, particularly those aged 24 to 28, but the Rows may have the chance to reveal more of their roster this week.

They also have a long injury list, with Tristan Seri, Jared Polec, Will Phillips and Miller Bergman all ruled out for the season, while two-time club champion Ben Cunnington (vulvar cancer) has stepped up training.

Flynn Perez will not play against Essendon due to suspension. Image: Getty ImagesSource: Getty Images

To make matters worse, Flynn Perez has been handed a one-match suspension for his rude behavior with Hawks star Jagger O’Meara.

North Melbourne was without Nick Larkey (heel) in Saturday’s 46-point loss to Hawthorn.

The virus has hit West Coast and Fremantle hard at the start of the year, while fires have broken out at various clubs, with the AFL warning of a challenging month or so ahead.

AFL players are not required to be fully vaccinated against Covid-19, but most teams have been working harder in recent weeks to protect themselves from the North Melbourne-like situation.

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