Australia spin bowling consultant Fawad Ahmed returns positive for Covid-19

Australia spin bowling consultant Fawad Ahmed has tested positive for Covid-19 ahead of Australia’s first Test against host Pakistan, scheduled to begin at the Rawalpindi Cricket Stadium, Rawalpindi from on Friday.

Ahmed, who will work as a consultant during Australia’s first tour of Pakistan in 24 years, tested positive in a test conducted upon his arrival at the team hotel on Monday following his involvement in the recently concluded edition of Pakistan Super League (PSL).

After the development, 40-year-old Ahmed will now remain in isolation for at aminimum period of five days and will only be released he tests negative twice.

As per reports, Ahmed has had no direct contact with the Australian squad, who have all tested negative since arriving in Pakistan for the upcoming three-match Test series.

Earlier in February, the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) and Cricket Australia (CA) had announced a revised itinerary for the upcoming Australia men’s cricket team’s tour of Pakistan during the current calendar year.

The tour, which will be Australia’s first in 24 years, is set to start and end in Rawalpindi with the opening Test to be played from March 4-8 and the four white-ball matches to be played from March 29 to April 5, a statement from the PCB had said.

The change in the first Test venue meant that the second Test will be played in Karachi from 12-16 March and the third in Lahore from 21-25 March.

The PCB further said that the schedule has been revised to ease logistical and operational challenges as well as to avoid Pakistan Day rehearsals, which usually commence in Islamabad in the second week of March.

It also said that the two cricket boards have also agreed that the Australia Test side will complete their isolation in Australia, before arriving in Islamabad on 27 February on a chartered flight. After a one-day room isolation, they will hold training sessions at the Pindi Cricket Stadium.

Notably, the Tests will be part of the ICC World Test Championship, while the ODIs are linked to the ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup Super League from which the top eight sides, including hosts India, will qualify directly for the 2023 50-over World Cup.

Recently, the PCB had announced that TikTok, one of the leading destination for short form videos, will be the title sponsor of the upcoming historic Test series between Pakistan and Australia.

As the title sponsor, TikTok will provide a place where cricket fans can follow their favourite cricket content creators, share the best TikTok cricket content, and create their own special moments, reactions and celebrations around this historic series with Australia.

Significantly, Australia had last toured Pakistan in 1998-99 when Mark Taylor led the visitors to a 1-0 series victory.

Revised schedule:

27 Feb – Arrival in Islamabad

4-8 Mar – 1st Test, Rawalpindi

12-16 Mar – 2nd Test, Karachi

21-25 Mar – 3rd Test, Lahore

29 Mar – 1st ODI, Rawalpindi

31 Mar – 2nd ODI, Rawalpindi

2 April – 3rd ODI, Rawalpindi

5 Apr – one-off T20I, Rawalpindi

6 Apr – Departure

News Desk

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