Wednesday, September 23, 2020

Seven more Pakistani players test positive for COVID-19

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Lahore: Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) on Tuesday confirmed that seven more players, including Fakhar Zaman, Mohammad Hafeez, and Wahab Riaz, have tested positive for coronavirus.

Fakhar Zaman [ANI]
Wahab Riaz [ANI]

Besides, Imran Khan, Kashif Bhatti, Mohammad Hasnain, and Mohammad Rizwan are the other players who have been diagnosed with the virus.

With seven new cases, the total number of Pakistani cricketers who have contracted COVID-19 has reached 10. Earlier, Haider Ali, Haris Rauf, and Shadab Khan had tested positive for coronavirus.

Apart from the aforementioned players, a player support personnel, Malang Ali, has also tested positive for the virus.

“Following the announcement yesterday that three players had tested positive for COVID-19, the Pakistan Cricket Board on Tuesday confirmed that a further seven players and a player support personnel from a total of 35 have tested positive for COVID-19. The PCB had organised these 35 tests in Karachi, Lahore, and Peshawar on Monday,” PCB said in a statement.
Players who have tested negative are Abid Ali, Asad Shafiq, Azhar Ali, Babar Azam, Faheem Ashraf, Fawad Alam, Iftikhar Ahmad, Imam-ul-Haq, Khushdil Shah, Mohammad Abbas, Naseem Shah, Sarfaraz Ahmed, Shaheen Shah Afridi, Shan Masood, Sohail Khan, and Yasir Shah.

Coach Misbah-ul-Haq, Younis Khan test negative

Head coach Misbah-ul-Haq and batting coach Younis Khan also tested negative. Shoaib Malik, Cliffe Deacon, and Waqar Younis are yet to be tested for coronavirus.

“Like Haider, Haris and Shadab none of the seven players and masseur had reported any prior symptoms of coronavirus until they underwent the first round of testing on Monday ahead of the side’s departure for Manchester,” the statement read.

The PCB medical panel is already in contact with these players and the masseur, who have been instructed to observe strict quarantine at their homes.

PCB said that players and player support personnel, who have tested negative, will assemble in a bio-secure environment in Lahore on June 24 and will undergo the second round of testing the day after.

The players and player support personnel, who will test negative on June 25, will depart for Manchester. Within 24 hours after arriving in the UK, they will be tested by the ECB medical panel. The players and player support personnel, who will test negative upon arrival in the UK, will observe a quarantine period as per the UK government’s regulations but will be allowed to train and practice in a bio-secure facility.

The players and player support personnel, who have tested positive in pre-departure testing, will observe self-isolation in their homes and will undergo further testing. After their two tests are negative, they will be flown to England. Moreover, they will be tested again by the ECB medical panel upon their arrival in the UK.

After they test negative, they will be allowed to integrate with the Pakistan men’s national squad.

According to series SOPs, the Pakistan men’s national cricket team will undergo, at least, five tests in the lead up to the first test.

PCB Chief Executive

PCB Chief Executive Wasim Khan said the tour to England is ‘very much’ on track and the team will depart on June 28.

“The tour to England is very much on track and the side will depart as per schedule on 28 June. Fortunately, all the first-choice red-ball squad, barring Mohammad Rizwan, are negative, which means they can start training and practising immediately after they have been tested and given the all-clear when they arrive in England,” Khan said in a statement.

“In the meantime, Misbah-ul-Haq is reviewing the training schedule in England and is firming up plans for reserve players to be tested as a backup,” he added.

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