England vs Pakistan: COVID-19 has wreaked havoc in England’s camp ahead of ODI series against Pakistan after three players and four staff members tested positive. It has forced the ECB to send the entire England squad including captain Eoin Morgan and Joe Root into isolation. Apart from that, all the close contacts have also sent into isolation. Ben Stokes has been named captain instead.
“Following PCR tests administered yesterday (Monday) in Bristol, The England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) can confirm that seven members – three players and four management team members- of the England Men’s ODI party have tested positive for COVID-19,” the ECB said in a statement.
“In collaboration with Public Health England, Public Health Wales and Bristol Local Health Authority, those impacted will now observe a period of self-isolation from July 4 following the UK Government’s protocol on quarantine,” it added.
England vs Pakistan: Despite Eoin Morgan and others sent into isolation, the ODI and T20I series will go ahead as scheduled after ECB called for reinforcements with Ben Stokes, who is returning from an injury, named as the captain. He was not initially named in the squad. All incoming squad and support team members will follow PCR tests and bridging protocols to ensure safe entry to the national camp.
‘‘We have been mindful that the emergence of the Delta variant, along with our move away from the stringent enforcement of bio secure environments, could increase the chances of an outbreak. We made a strategic choice to try to adapt protocols, in order to support the overall wellbeing of our players and management staff who have spent much of the last 14 months living in very restricted conditions,” Tom Harrison, Chief Executive Officer said.
England vs Pakistan: The COVID-19 crisis less than 48 hours ahead of the match has put ECB on the backfoot as top players including Eoin Morgan, Jonny Bairstow, Joe Root all have been ruled out for the ODI series. They will spend at least 10 days in isolation.
“Overnight we have worked swiftly to identify a new squad, and we are grateful to Ben Stokes who will return to England duties to Captain. We also recognise the impact this news will have on our First Class Counties and their Men’s playing squads and thank them, along with our partners Sky and Royal London, for their ongoing support in dealing with this pandemic,” Harrison said.
England Men’s ODI Squad
Ben Stokes (Durham, captain), Jake Ball, Danny Briggs, Brydon Carse, Zak Crawley,
Ben Duckett, Lewis Gregory, Tom Helm, Will Jacks, Dan Lawrence, Saqib Mahmood, Dawid Malan, Craig Overton, Matt Parkinson, David Payne, Phil Salt, John Simpson, James Vince