The Canberra Capitals' showdown with the reigning champions has been cancelled hours before tip-off as the COVID-19 pandemic continues to derail the WNBL season.
Canberra were supposed to face the Southside Flyers in Ballarat on Friday night before the match was postponed. It is understood the decision was made due to a positive COVID-19 case within Southside's camp.
A WNBL statement said the match has been rescheduled for round 11, from February 17-20.
Friday night's clash was to mark the return of Paul Goriss to his post as Capitals coach following a suspension for his part in an integrity breach that saw referee Simon Cosier suspended for the season.
"It is a disrupted season and these things have happened before," Goriss said.
"It's my first time experiencing it since we've started but the poor girls and Kennedy [Kereama] have been through a lot with cancelled games on the day of games. Unfortunately it's the world we live in and how we're going with these things at the moment, with testing on the morning of games.
"We have to protect everyone's health and safety first, so unfortunately it is what it is. It is disappointing for the girls not to play, we've had five games cancelled on the day of games which is mentally draining when you're getting yourself up and prepared to play a game, and then it getting cancelled.
"We've got to clear up processes around how the league is going to manage all of these cancelled games, reporting COVID and what we do with the games."
WNBL officials are scrambling to reschedule 10 games into a season fixture already slated to stretch into April.
The Capitals have three matches - against Sydney, Melbourne and Southside - to be played at a later date following COVID-related postponements.
WNBL officials could be forced to schedule matches within a FIBA international window from February 7-16.
Officials are still planning for Sunday's game between the Capitals and the Bendigo Spirit at the National Convention Centre to go ahead.
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