Published On: Thu, Jul 15th, 2021

BCCI confirms India player tests positive in Eng, kept in isolation

New Delhi: The Indian cricket board on Thursday confirmed that a player from the Indian Test squad in England has tested positive for Covid-19 and has been kept in isolation. The player — which sources say is Rishabh Pant — will undergo another test after a couple of days.

A loss of a key player like Pant can hurt India badly

The Board vice-president confirmed that the affected player is staying with his relatives in isolation and won’t travel to Durham, where the remaining squad will assemble for a camp beginning Thursday (July 15).

The positive test, however, has brought the BCCI under scrutiny for its decision to allow players to visit sporting venues as well as other public places in England and mingle with crowd during their three-week break after WTC final.

The lack of precautions in a country that is opening up after lockdown and seeing a rise in cases, is shocking considering that India are due to play a five-Test series from August 4.

A loss of a key player like Pant can hurt India badly.

Pant had visited the Euro 2020 pre-quarter final between England and Germany on June 29 and had later tweeted pictures of himself with a few of his friends/relatives sitting in the crowd.

“Good experience watching [emoticon: football] [emoticons: flags of England and Germany],” Pant had tweeted with pictures from the Wembley Stadium where the match was played.

Hanuma Vihari and Jasprit Bumrah are the other players to have visited Wembley to watch Euro 2020 football. Team coach Ravi Shastri and premier off-spinner R Ashwin, who played a County Championship match for Surrey this week, had visited Wimbledon during the break.

Asked if it was sensible on the part of the BCCI to let players mingle with the public during the break, a senior BCCI official said the players needed to be given some time off.

“It wouldn’t have been good to keep them in isolation or bio-bubble for three weeks. They were in isolation prior to the World Test Championship final and remained in bio-bubble through it. They then again go into bio-bubble from today (Thursday, July 15). It would have been mentally draining for them,” said the official.

It seems the BCCI has sprung into action immediately after the emergence of the Covid-19 case in the squad.

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