West Indies has received a huge blow ahead of their T20I series versus Pakistan as the trio of Roston Chase, Sheldon Cottrell, and Kyle Mayers have tested positive for COVID-19. Cricket West Indies (CWI) confirmed the development but said the series will go ahead as per schedule.
West Indies players landed in Karachi on December 9. Upon arrival, the players and support staff were placed under strict quarantine in a hotel. However, during the regular rounds of testing, the three players and a non-coaching member returned positive. The four members are fully vaccinated and asymptomatic. They are currently in isolation as advised by medical staff.
“Our arrival testing protocols in Pakistan have confirmed four (4) COVID-19 positives, Grave was quoted by a CWI release. “These were confirmed whilst the players and staff were still in room isolation, so despite this significant setback to our preparation plans, we are confident that the tour can continue as everyone else returned negative PCRs prior to their arrival into Pakistan and two negative PCRs since they have been in Karachi.
“The risk of COVID-19 infection is impossible to remove completely from a cricket tour, in spite of the fact that many of our players have been living in bio-secure bubbles almost continuously since before the CPL. This unusual loss of three players from our squad will seriously impact our team preparations, but the rest of the squad are in good spirits and will begin training today ahead of our first game on Monday.”
The West Indies team are already without their skipper Keiron Pollard and a few senior players, and the loss of the three key players is a massive setback. The three T20Is will be followed by three ODI matches. All six matches will be played at the National Stadium in Karachi.