Guwahati: After a series of COVID-19 scare engulfing the Indian Premier League (IPL), with Chennai Super Kings pacer Deepak Chahar along with 12 others from the contingent testing positive for the novel coronavirus, the BCCI insisted that there was no immediate threat to the IPL, which is scheduled to start from September 19.
The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) has released a media advisory on the official IPL website on Saturday, where it has mentioned about the COVID-19 testing and safety protocols for the 2020 season of the IPL.
The BCCI has put in place stringent health and safety protocols for the latest season of the popular cricket jamboree, which is scheduled to start from September 19 in the UAE.
Accordingly, upon landing in the UAE, all the participants have followed a mandatory testing and quarantine program. A total of 1,988 RT-PCR COVID tests were carried out between August 20 and 28 across all participant groups in the UAE. These groups include players, support staff, team management, BCCI staff, IPL operational team, hotel and ground transport staff,” the media release from BCCI said.
Confirming about the situation in the CSK contingent, the BCCI media release said: “13 personnel have tested positive of which 2 are players. All the affected person as well as their close contacts are asymptomatic and have been isolated from other team members. They are being monitored by the IPL Medical Team.”
Assuring that the tournament will follow full safety guidelines, the board added: “As per the IPL 2020 Health and Safety Protocols testing on all participants will be conducted regularly throughout the IPL 2020 Season.”
The BCCI has raised its concerns about the CSK contingent with as many as 13 positive test results.
It is to be noted that, CSK was the only team that underwent a camp in India prior to departure for Dubai, and the BCCI had expressed its concerns about the camps. According to reports, some BCCI officials even cautioned the CSK management about the risks of holding such a camp in India.
However, CSK management believed that the team should get a good hit in the field before leaving for the UAE.
Meanwhile, the CSK camp has been left in total disarray now, with as many as 13 members including two players testing COVID positive. Earlier in the day, CSK’s star middle-order batsman Suresh Raina pulled out of the IPL 2020 due to personal reasons and returned to India, adding to the team’s jeopardy even more.
“It is difficult but the entire team is on the same page. We know we are in a position to absorb this delay and take it in our stride,” a CSK source said to a leading news daily.
The Chennai franchise believes that they can bounce back strongly from this situation and take the field with full power.
As per the tournament rules, the previous year’s finalists play the first match of a new season. Going by this rule, the first match of the upcoming season will be scheduled between Mumbai Indians and Chennai Super Kings. A source close to the CSK contingent said that they won’t be asking the BCCI to postpone its matches if no one else from the camp tests positive in the subsequent tests.
Meanwhile, the members who have been tested positive can return to the camp only after a 14-day quarantine period, following which they will have to test negative twice, 24 hours apart, before being permitted to re-enter the bio-secure zone.