PCB announces stringent COVID-19 protocols ahead of domestic season

The Pakistan Cricket Board on Wednesday announced stringent COVID-19 protocols for the 2020/21 domestic season which kicks off later this month with the National T20 Championship.

The PCB said squad members, match officials, duty doctors and security managers will be placed in bio-secure zones from the beginning of the season to ensure health and safety of players, officials and all other stakeholders.

All of them will be required to have two negative COVID-19 results before joining the bio-secure zone, which is in line with the practices carried out at present in international cricket.

According to PCB, members of the First XI and Second XI provincial squads are required to submit the results of their first COVID-19 test by September 16 and 18 respectively.

The PCB will reimburse the cost of the first test and conduct all following tests during the course of the season.

Those returning negative results will be invited to PCB designated central stations, where they will undergo second COVID-19 test under the supervision of the Board medical team. The second test of the First XI and Second XI squads will be conducted on September 18 and 21 respectively.

While travelling to the central stations, the players and support staff personnel will not be allowed to use public transportation, except for air travel. Upon their arrival at the central stations, they will undergo a disinfection process and will be given separate accommodation.

The Board said those who return positive in the tests conducted at the central stations will be isolated for five days and tested twice. If these players or support staff personnel continue to test positive, they would have to undergo a two-week self-isolation and return two negative results before their integration in the bio-secure zone.

It said the players who toured England for three Tests and three T20Is will travel to Multan on September 23 and after their second negative test will join their respective domestic teams on September 25 as they have been granted a period of relaxation following their 10-week-long tour.