A different look for NBC World Series tournament with new COVID-19 safety precautions
WICHITA, Kan. (KWCH) - The NBC World Series has been taking place for nearly a century, but this year COVID-19 almost jeopardized that streak.
There will be new safety procedures for not only the fans but the players and staff as well.
“Here at Eck Stadium, every other row is closed off. We also have to keep our fans under 2,000. That’s our attendance and that’s of course required by the county,” Kevin Jenks, NBC World Series tournament director said.
Jenks said the organization has been working with not only both Reno and Sedgwick counties to abide by mandates, but also Wichita State and Hobart-Detter Stadium to adhere to their regulations as well.
Jenks said the NBC has worked through so many different scenarios and puzzle pieces to bring this World Series to fruition, like adding Eck Stadium as a host site within the last couple months. Jenks also understands that this virus is a fluid situation and that the tournament could change at any minute.
“I think we’ve covered all of our bases. We could get surprised by something but that happens. But I think as far as mitigating the risk, I think we’ve done a really good job,” said Jenks.
As far as players go, teams are encouraged to perform health checks before arriving at either of the ballparks. Then NBC staff will perform an additional health check before game time. If any player shows signs of sickness, they will be tested for COVID-19.
“There is that scenario where a team might have multiple positive tests and they will not be able to continue playing in the NBC World Series,” said Jenks. “They’re coming here to win a national championship and so they’re taking it pretty seriously.”
Fans are required to wear masks as well as players when they aren’t on the field. Jenks said fan/player interactions will be limited.
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