Rescued British yachtsman lands in Sydney's COVID-19 quarantine

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MELBOURNE (Reuters) - A British yachtsman has been placed in mandatory coronavirus quarantine in a hotel in downtown Sydney after being rescued from his sinking craft in rough waters, Australian police said on Sunday.

Australian media said the 40-year-old was sailing to Sydney from Tahiti.

Police in New South Wales said they launched a 26-hour rescue effort from midnight on Friday, after receiving reports of a 50-foot (15 m) Beneteau yacht taking on water about 95 nautical miles off the coast of Newcastle.

"In rough seas, the vessel and sole occupant, a 40-year-old United Kingdom national, were towed to Newcastle Harbour," they said in a statement.

Police escorted the man to mandatory quarantine after border processing formalities, they added, but did not disclose his name.

Australia closed its borders to non-nationals and non-residents in March 2020 and has allowed only limited international arrivals since, mainly citizens returning from abroad.

All overseas arrivals must complete a two-week hotel quarantine, managed by state governments.

(Reporting by Lidia Kelly; Editing by Clarence Fernandez)