Page last updated at 16:05 GMT, Wednesday, 1 July 2009 17:05 UK

Wimbledon staff 'flu' cases rise

A ball boy at Wimbledon
No cases of swine flu have been diagnosed at Wimbledon

The number of Wimbledon staff told to stay at home because of flu-like symptoms has risen to 28, the All England Club has said.

Fears of a possible swine flu outbreak were raised on Monday after four ball boys and girls became unwell, although three are now back at work.

A newspaper has reported that two Slovakian players and a US competitor were believed to have the virus.

Tournament organisers said they could not confirm these claims.

There were another 121 confirmed cases of swine flu in London on Wednesday - bringing the total number of people who have contracted the virus in the capital so far to 1,794.

'Fine to work'

A Wimbledon spokeswoman said: "Twenty-eight Wimbledon personnel have been asked to stay at home with flu-like symptoms.

"But of the initial ball kids who were affected, three are now back at Wimbledon and fine to work."

She continued: "Once they have been without symptoms for 24 hours they are allowed back to work - and the ball kids are obviously desperate to get back on court."

The unwell staff include people working in the Wimbledon shop, catering staff, more ball boys and girls and one employee from the broadcast centre.

Fenella Wrigley, a Wimbledon doctor, said the numbers falling ill were a refection of the situation in London as a whole.

The tournament employs more than 6,000 staff at any one time.

All England Club chief executive Ian Ritchie said: "There is no extra risk to those connected with the event, be they players, staff or spectators, and we are able to continue with the championships as normal."

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