In a big relief for the cricket boards and players, the Australian Government and the International Cricket Council (ICC) have decided to allow players to take the field even if they have returned covid-positive in the ongoing ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2022.
Moreover, the ICC has made covid-19 testing flexible and isn’t mandatory for players. Importantly, this will be the first time since covid-19 broke out that international cricket matches will be held without the prior routine testing of players.
However, a certain set protocol will have to be followed in case a player infected with covid-19 takes part in the matches. The player’s presence on the field will be subject to the approval of the medical team and the concerned cricketer will have to wear a mask and maintain a safe distance from his teammates.
Earlier this very precedent was set when Australian Women’s cricketer Tahila McGrath took the field during Commonwealth Series against India despite testing covid positive.
Notably, team management can opt for a replacement in case a player has tested covid positive and he can return to the squad once he shows a negative report.
The Aussie government had imposed multiple covid-restrictions in the past. There were multiple rounds of testing and quarantine-related protocols that were required to be followed by each team before playing in Australia. However, they have become the first nation to initiate a new normal of playing without mandatory covid testing.
Ironically, the Australian government had earlier banned tennis player Novak Djokovic from participating in the Australian Open as he refrained from getting vaccinated.
T20 World Cup 2022 has begun:
The eighth edition of the Men’s T20 World Cup began yesterday with two qualifying fixtures. In the first match, Namibia took on Sri Lanka and sealed the game by 55 runs while in the second encounter UAE were up against Netherland in which the latter got off the line with 3 wickets.
Meanwhile, the warm-up matches for already qualifying teams will also start today i.e., 17th October. Four practice games will be staged today – INDvsAUS, NZvsSA, ENGvsPAK, AFGvsBAN – in Brisbane.