Tag Archives: Covid-19

Peshawar Zalmi’s Wahab Riaz, Haider Ali test positive for Covid-19

Peshawar Zalmi skipper Wahab Riaz and batsman Haider Ali along with Karachi Kings’ President Wasim Akram have reportedly tested positive for Covid-19, just two days before the start of the seventh season of the Pakistan Super League (PSL).

After the development, the total number of Covid positive players in the Zalmis camp reaches to four as the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) on Monday had confirmed the franchise’s Kamran Akmal and Arshad Iqbal had tested positive for the virus. Both Akmal and Iqbal were being replaced by players from the reserves pool.

The replacement, according to the PCB, will be temporary and the replaced players can re-integrate into the squad after completing isolation and receiving negative PCR results.

Moreover, the Pakistan board has said that each side will be allowed a maximum of 20 players at any given time and the player replaced will be allowed to rejoin the side but will require the event technical committee’s approval.

Last week, the PCB had finalised the health and safety protocols for the upcoming PSL season amid the massive in in Covid-19 infections, and had also acknowledged the players and the people assocaited with the tournament in this regard.

The PCB had said that anyone who fails to follow the protocols will face five penalties depending on the nature of the violation, which includes five to 25% and 25% to 50% match fee deductions. As per the PCB, serious violations could lead to elimination from the team and the committee will have the right to impose severe punishment on different cases of violation.

The list of minor violations include several things such as not keeping a distance of six feet, sharing water bottles, kits, towels, and different items, shaking hands before or after the matches, not picking up laundry from the ground or dressing room, using isolation rooms without permission, getting physiotherapy or massages without a mask, getting physiotherapy for more than 15 minutes, etc.

On the other hand, the major violations include: Calling someone in your room apart from the maintenance staff, not wearing a mask where required, ordering something in a room without the permission of the manager of bio-secure bubble, not informing the integrity manager of your symptoms, taking medicines to reduce symptoms or to affect test results, meeting someone who has covid symptoms or is positive for the virus, telling someone else about the cases or symptoms outside the bubble.

Significantly, after the abrupt postponement of the West Indies tour of Pakistan due to the emergence of Covid-19 cases inside the secure bio-bubble, the PCB is extra cautious for the upcoming PSL season.

In December 2021, the Covid-19 outbreak in the West Indies camp had led to the postponement of the ODI series between touring West Indies and hosts Pakistan. The ODI series will now be played in June 2022.

After the development, PCB Chief Operating Office Salman Naseer said that the recent experience has made the board extra cautious for the upcoming seventh edition of the T20 League.

Notably, the upcoming PSL season will be staged in two phases with the first one to be held in Karachi while the second and last phase will be held in Lahore. Each phase will consist of 15 matches each.

Following an opening ceremony, defending champions Multan Sultans will take on hosts and 2020 champions Karachi Kings at the National Stadium in Karachi, which will begin at 7pm PKT.

Later, 2019 champions Quetta Gladiators will face 2017 winners Peshawar Zalmi on the following day.

CSA keen to host IPL 2022; sends proposal to BCCI

Even as the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) is yet to finalise the venue for the upcoming 15th edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL), Cricket South Africa (CSA) has reportedly shown interest in staging the upcoming season of the cash-rich league if it has to be shifted from India due to the recent Covid-19 outbreak in the country.

As per reports, the CSA has said that South Africa would be a cheaper option for staging the showpiece event as compared to the UAE where the second leg of the league was held in 2021.

A report in cricbuzz.com has said that discussions are on between the BCCI and CSA “with particular emphasis on venues for which there would be no or bare minimum air travel, cutting down on the expenses for the franchises”.

CSA has also reportedly assured that the hotel tariffs in South Africa would be “significantly cheaper than in UAE”.

As per the report, CSA has given the proposal to host the matches in four centres in and around Johannesburg, with the teams’ bio-secure environment in the capital city. The four venues — Wanderers Stadium (Johannesburg), Centurion Park (Pretoria), Willowmoore Park (Benoni) and Senwes Cricket Stadium (Potchefstroom) — are floodlit and within driving distance from one another.

Also, the report suggested that as the upcoming edition will be a 10-team affair, the CSA had also proposed a part of the league could be played at Newlands Stadium in Cape Town and nearby Paarl ground.

Earlier, the BCCI had said that the venue for IPL 2022 will be finalised around February 20, with India being the front-runner and the UAE and South Africa also viable options due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Recently, Team India had completed its three-Test and three-ODI engagement in South Africa without any bio-bubble breach or COVID-related issues following which South Africa’s director of cricket Graeme Smith had thanked BCCI president Sourav Ganguly, secretary Jay Shah and the Indian team for showing ‘faith’ in CSAt o organise the tour of the country.

South Africa had hosted the IPL in 2009 across eight venues, but then there were no COVID-19 concerns.

Earlier on January BCCI secretary had announced that the 2022 season of IPL will begin in the last week of March and will conclude in May.

After a meeting with the owners of the franchises of the league, Shah in an official statement said: “I am delighted to confirm that the 15th season of the IPL will start in the last week of March and will run until May end. A majority of the team owners expressed their wish that the tournament be held in India. The BCCI was always keen on staging the 2022 edition that will see two new teams – Ahmedabad and Lucknow – in India,”

“I can tell you that we will leave no stone unturned in ensuring that IPL stays in India. The BCCI has not compromised on the health and safety of its stakeholders in the past and will concurrently work on Plan B since the COVID-19 situation with new variants remains fluid. The mega IPL Auction will take place on February 12-13th and we will lock in venues before that,” he added.

The BCCI secretary however, didn’t announced the venue of the mega auctions however, several reports suggest that the two-day affair is most likely to be staged in Bengaluru.

Earlier following the end of the registration for the 2022 player auction on January 20, 1,214 players had registered for the two-day event..

Of the 1,214 players, 896 are Indians while the remaining 318 are overseas, who have signed up for the auction.

The upcoming IPL 2022 mega auction will see the newly inducted franchises — Ahmedabad and Lucknow — entering the bandwagon.

CA in talks with PCB to play all 3 Tests at single venue during upcoming Pakistan tour

Cricket Australia (CA) is in reportedly with talks with the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) over deciding the venues for the three-Test series during Australia’a tour of Pakistan in March, The Sunday Morning Herald has reported.

Although the three games are scheduled to take place in Karachi, Rawalpindi and Lahore, the Sunday Morning Heral has reported that “negotiations are continuing with the (PCB) about the possibility of playing all three Tests in one venue for health and security reasons.”

Notably, it will be after a long gap of 24 years when the Australian side tour Pakistan as the PCB is trying its best to revive international cricket and host foreign teams in its soil.

While the first Test match is scheduled from March 3 in Karachi, the second Test will be played between March 12 and 16 in Rawalpindi before the two teams clash for one final time in the series between March 21-25 in Lahore.

The report further suggested that as some Aussies were still uneasy about touring Pakistan, they were encouraged after receiving reports of the West Indies successful tour to the country.

“The tour will be made as short as feasibly possible given the bowlers will need to get their workloads up for the Test series, which begins on March 3,” the publication reported.

Meanwhile, Jhye Richardson has been ruled out of the Pakistan tour, and a preliminary squad will be announced in the coming days, it added.

After the Tests, the two sides will square-off in a three-match ODI series, beginning March 29 in Lahore. All the three ODIs have been scheduled to be held in Lahore. The tour will end with a one-off T20I game on April 5, which will also be staged at the same venue.

While the Tests will be played as part of the ICC World Test Championship (WTC), the ODIs will be connected to the ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup Super League – a 13-team event from which the seven highest-placed sides and the hosts, India, will qualify directly for the event proper in 2023.

The tour was finalised in November, 2021 following which an elated PCB Chairman Ramiz Raja, who played eight Tests and 18 ODIs against Australia, had said: “I am delighted to welcome Australia to Pakistan. From a personal point of view, it pleases me no end that we’ll be engaged in a three-Test match series, connoisseurs delight. Australia are one of the high-performing sides and them playing in our backyard for the first time after a gap of 24 years will be a special treat for the fans.”

“Likewise, it will be a great opportunity for the Australia cricketers to not only play at our iconic venues but also feel and enjoy the respect, love and hospitality that this great country offers, something which most of their previous generation of cricketers missed out by playing offshore,” he had added.

Meanwhile, Cricket Australia (CA) Chief Executive Nick Hockley had expressed: “Cricket Australia is excited about the prospect of touring Pakistan next year for what will be a highly anticipated series in a country so incredibly passionate about the game and their national team.”

“Pakistan is a formidable opposition with an exceptionally talented team, as evidenced by their dynamic performances in the current ICC Men’s T20 World Cup in the UAE. We thank the PCB for their considerable efforts in planning for the tour and look forward to continuing to work closely over the coming months to finalise the necessary operations, logistics, security and Covid-19 protocols. The safety and welfare of our players and staff remains our number one priority, and we will continue to work with the PCB and relevant agencies to ensure that appropriate and sufficient arrangements are put in place for the tour,” he had added.

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

Schedule of Australia Tour of Pakistan:

3-7 Mar – 1st Test, Karachi

12-16 Mar – 2nd Test, Rawalpindi

21-25 Mar – 3rd Test, Lahore

—————————-

29 Mar – 1st ODI, Lahore

31 Mar – 2nd ODI, Lahore

2 Apr – 3rd ODI, Lahore

—————————–

5 Apr – only T20I, Lahore

Peshawar Zalmi’s Kamran Akmal, Arshad Iqbal test positive for Covid-19

Ahead of the start of the seventh edition of the Pakistan Super League (PSL), Peshawar Zalmi’s Kamran Akmal and Arshad Iqbal have returned positive for Covid-19 and will now be replaced by players from the reserves pool, the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) has confirmed.

Akmal and Iqbal had underwent PCR tests at the time of check-in at the team hotel for participating in the uipcoming league on January 22. After the development, Peshawar Zalmi has announced that the duo will now be replaced by Imam-ul-Haq and Ammad Butt for the upcoming PSL matches.

However, as per the PCB, the replacement will be temporary and Akmal and Iqbal can re-integrate into the squad after completing isolation and receiving negative PCR results.

Meanwhile, the Pakistan board has further said that each side will be allowed a maximum of 20 players at any given time and the player replaced will be allowed to rejoin the side but will require the event technical committee’s approval.

Last week, the PCB had finalised the health and safety protocols for the upcoming PSL season amid the massive in in Covid-19 infections, and had also acknowledged the players and the people assocaited with the tournament in this regard.

The PCB had said that anyone who fails to follow the protocols will face five penalties depending on the nature of the violation, which includes five to 25% and 25% to 50% match fee deductions. As per the PCB, serious violations could lead to elimination from the team and the committee will have the right to impose severe punishment on different cases of violation.

The list of minor violations include several things such as not keeping a distance of six feet, sharing water bottles, kits, towels, and different items, shaking hands before or after the matches, not picking up laundry from the ground or dressing room, using isolation rooms without permission, getting physiotherapy or massages without a mask, getting physiotherapy for more than 15 minutes, etc.

On the other hand, the major violations include: Calling someone in your room apart from the maintenance staff, not wearing a mask where required, ordering something in a room without the permission of the manager of bio-secure bubble, not informing the integrity manager of your symptoms, taking medicines to reduce symptoms or to affect test results, meeting someone who has covid symptoms or is positive for the virus, telling someone else about the cases or symptoms outside the bubble.

Significantly, after the abrupt postponement of the West Indies tour of Pakistan due to the emergence of Covid-19 cases inside the secure bio-bubble, the PCB is extra cautious for the upcoming PSL season.

In December 2021, the Covid-19 outbreak in the West Indies camp had led to the postponement of the ODI series between touring West Indies and hosts Pakistan. The ODI series will now be played in June 2022.

After the development, PCB Chief Operating Office Salman Naseer said that the recent experience has made the board extra cautious for the upcoming seventh edition of the T20 League.

Notably, the upcoming PSL season will be staged in two phases with the first one to be held in Karachi while the second and last phase will be held in Lahore. Each phase will consist of 15 matches each.

Following an opening ceremony, defending champions Multan Sultans will take on hosts and 2020 champions Karachi Kings at the National Stadium in Karachi, which will begin at 7pm PKT.

Later, 2019 champions Quetta Gladiators will face 2017 winners Peshawar Zalmi on the following day.

Inaugural edition of Prime Volleyball League shifted to Hyderabad due to Covid scare

Amid the surge in Covid-19 infections in the country, the management of the RuPay Prime Volleyball League (PVL) on Monday announced to shift the venue inaugural edition from Kochi to Hyderabad after careful deliberations.

The inaugural edition of the tournament will now be held at the famous Gachibowli Indoor Stadium, where a number of big sporting events have been organized in the past. The league will be held between February 5 and 27.

An official statement from the management said that the health and safety of all the personnel involved in the competition was the number one priority for them and therefore the competition will be held in a robust bio-bubble and the league organizers will ensure that all protocols are strictly being followed inside the bubble.

Commenting on the development, Tuhin Mishra, Co-Founder & MD, Baseline Ventures, said: “We were really looking forward to hosting the RuPay Prime Volleyball League in Kochi, however, after reviewing the rising Covid-19 situation in Kerala and constant discussions with various authorities, we came to the conclusion that it would be best for everyone if we move the venue to Hyderabad keeping in mind. There is a strong interest for volleyball in Hyderabad and therefore it was a simple choice for us once we decided to change the venue.”

“We are working with the Telangana State authorities to ensure all protocols are followed and we conduct a smooth sporting event. We hope that all players and support staff have a fantastic competition in Hyderabad. We would also like to thank the Kerala State Authorities and the great team at Regional Sports Centre for their support and understanding through this period,” he added.

Meanwhile, Joy Bhattacharya, CEO, RuPay Prime Volleyball League said: “Hyderabad has always had a great sporting culture and therefore we are delighted to organize the RuPay Prime Volleyball League in the city. We have waited a long time to provide a platform to all talented volleyball players from around the world to showcase their talent and hence we cannot wait for the competition to begin.”

“All the players are eagerly waiting to shine for their respective teams and we are doing everything to ensure a safe and successful tournament is organised. I would also like to thank all the teams and our partners for their support in reaching this decision,” he added.

Notably, the league is exclusively marketed by Baseline Ventures, the leading sports marketing firm in the nation while RuPay, the first-of-its-kind Global Card payment network from India, has come on board as the Title Sponsor of the RuPay Prime Volleyball League while Fantasy games leaders A23 have signed on as “Powered By” Sponsors in a multi-year deal.

On the other hand, EatFit, Amul and Nippon Paint are the Associate Spons while Cosco has associated as the Official Partner. Meanwhile, ShareChat and Moj are the Official Content Partners of the RuPay Prime Volleyball League.

The RuPay Prime Volleyball League will comprise 24 games and the schedule for the league will be announced in the days to follow.

PCB issues new playing conditions, general guidelines for PSL 7

The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) on Monday issued new points of amendment for the upcoming season of the Pakistan Super League (PSL) playing conditions and general guidelines for fans.

Notably, the upcoming seventh season of the T20 league will begin in Karachi January 27.

Some of the amendments to the playing conditions issued by the PCB are:

  • If a team loses players due to positive results, it can seek the Technical Committee’s approval for replacement players from the reserve pool of players (Clause 1.2.5.1).
  • A team must have at least 13 players who are COVID-19 negative in order for a match to take place (Clause 1.2.5.2).
  • Playing line-up must comprise a minimum of seven and a maximum of eight local players including an emerging player. However, if a team is affected by Covid to the extent that it is impossible for it to create a playing 11 in accordance with the relevant requirements, the requirements will stand waived to the necessary extent (Clause 1.2.5)

Notably, the HBL PSL 2022, the PCB’s marquee event, will begin from January 27 in Karachi before moving to Lahore for the second phase.

The upcoming season will be staged in two phases with the first one to be held in Karachi while the second and last phase will be held in Lahore. Each phase will consist of 15 matches each.

Following an opening ceremony, defending champions Multan Sultans will take on hosts and 2020 champions Karachi Kings at the National Stadium in Karachi, which will begin at 7pm PKT.

Later, 2019 champions Quetta Gladiators will face 2017 winners Peshawar Zalmi on the following day.

Meanwhile, the PCB had also finalised the health and safety protocols for the upcoming event amid the massive in in Covid-19 infections in Pakistan and had acknowledged the players and people assocaited with the tournament in this regard.

The Pakistan board had said that anyone who fails to follow the protocols will face five penalties depending on the nature of the violation, which includes five to 25% and 25% to 50% match fee deductions. As per the PCB, serious violations could lead to elimination from the team and the committee will have the right to impose severe punishment on different cases of violation.

The list of minor violations include several things such as not keeping a distance of six feet, sharing water bottles, kits, towels, and different items, shaking hands before or after the matches, not picking up laundry from the ground or dressing room, using isolation rooms without permission, getting physiotherapy or massages without a mask, getting physiotherapy for more than 15 minutes, etc.

On the other hand, the major violations include: Calling someone in your room apart from the maintenance staff, not wearing a mask where required, ordering something in a room without the permission of the manager of bio-secure bubble, not informing the integrity manager of your symptoms, taking medicines to reduce symptoms or to affect test results, meeting someone who has covid symptoms or is positive for the virus, telling someone else about the cases or symptoms outside the bubble.

Significantly, after the abrupt postponement of the West Indies tour of Pakistan due to the emergence of Covid-19 cases inside the secure bio-bubble, the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) is extra cautious for the upcoming PSL season.

In December 2021, the Covid-19 outbreak in the West Indies camp had led to the postponement of the ODI series between touring West Indies and hosts Pakistan. The ODI series will now be played in June 2022.

Schedule for PSL 7:

{Matches from January 27 to February 7 will be played in Karachi; matches from Feb 10-27 to be played in Lahore)

27 Jan – Karachi Kings vs Multan Sultans

28 Jan – Quetta Gladiators vs Peshawar Zalmi

29 Jan – Multan Sultans vs Lahore Qalandars; Karachi Kings vs Quetta Gladiators

30 Jan – Peshawar Zalmi vs Islamabad United; Karachi Kings vs Lahore Qalandars

31 Jan – Quetta Gladiators vs Multan Sultans

1 Feb – Islamabad United vs Multan Sultans

2 Feb – Peshawar Zalmi vs Lahore Qalandars

3 Feb – Quetta Gladiators vs Islamabad United

4 Feb – Karachi Kings vs Peshawar Zalmi

5 Feb – Islamabad United vs Lahore Qalandars; Peshawar Zalmi vs Multan Sultans

6 Feb – Karachi Kings vs Islamabad United

7 Feb – Quetta Gladiators vs Lahore Qalandars

10 Feb – Multan Sultans vs Peshawar Zalmi

11 Feb – Lahore Qalandars vs Multan Sultans

12 Feb – Islamabad United vs Quetta Gladiators

13 Feb – Peshawar Zalmi vs Karachi Kings; Lahore Qalandars vs Quetta Gladiators

14 Feb – Islamabad United vs Karachi Kings

15 Feb – Peshawar Zalmi vs Quetta Gladiators

16 Feb – Multan Sultans vs Karachi Kings

17 Feb – Islamabad United vs Peshawar Zalmi

18 Feb – Multan Sultans vs Quetta Gladiators; Lahore Qalandars vs Karachi Kings

19 Feb – Lahore Qalandars vs Islamabad United

20 Feb – Quetta Gladiators vs Karachi Kings; Multan Sultans vs Islamabad United

21 Feb – Lahore Qalandars vs Peshawar Zalmi

23 Feb – Qualifier (1 vs 2)

24 Feb – Eliminator 1 (3 vs 4)

25 Feb – Eliminator 2 (Loser Qualifier 1 vs Winner Eliminator 1)

27 Feb – (Qualifier v Eliminator 2) Final

IPL 2022 from last week of March; Mega Auction on Feb 12-13: Jay Shah

Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) secretary Jay Shah on Saturday announced that the 2022 season of the Indian Premier League (IPL) will begin in the last week of March and will conclude in May.

After a meeting with the owners of the franchises of the league, Shah in an official statement said: “I am delighted to confirm that the 15th season of the IPL will start in the last week of March and will run until May end. A majority of the team owners expressed their wish that the tournament be held in India. The BCCI was always keen on staging the 2022 edition that will see two new teams – Ahmedabad and Lucknow – in India,”

“I can tell you that we will leave no stone unturned in ensuring that IPL stays in India. The BCCI has not compromised on the health and safety of its stakeholders in the past and will concurrently work on Plan B since the COVID-19 situation with new variants remains fluid. The mega IPL Auction will take place on February 12-13th and we will lock in venues before that,” he added.

The BCCI secretary however, didn’t announced the venue of the mega auctions however, several reports suggest that the two-day affair is most likely to be staged in Bengaluru.

Earlier following the end of the registration for the 2022 player auction on January 20, 1,214 players had registered for the two-day event..

Of the 1,214 players, 896 are Indians while the remaining 318 are overseas, who have signed up for the auction.

The upcoming IPL 2022 mega auction will see the newly inducted franchises — Ahmedabad and Lucknow — entering the bandwagon.

Of the list, 61 are capped Indian players while 209 are capped international cricketers. 143 players are uncapped Indians who were a part of previous IPL seasons, while six players are uncapped internationals who were a part of previous IPL seasons. In terms of uncapped players, 692 players from India and 62 international players have registered themselves.

Earlier, a total of 33 players were either retained or picked ahead of the auctions,

Notably, the existing eight IPL franchises have retained a total of 27 players while the two new IPL teams (Ahmedabad and Lucknow) have picked six players (three each) ahead of the auction.

List of IPL Retention:

CSK: Ravindra Jadeja, MS Dhoni, Moeen Ali and Ruturaj Gaikwad.

DC: Rishabh Pant, Axar Patel, Prithvi Shaw and Anrich Nortje.

KKR: Andre Russell, Varun Chakravarthy, Venkatesh Iyer and Sunil Narine.

MI: Rohit Sharma, Jasprit Bumrah, Suryakumar Yadav and Kieron Pollard.

PBKS: Mayank Agarwal and Arshdeep Singh.

RR: Sanju Samson, Jos Buttler and Yashasvi Jaiswal.

RCB: Virat Kohli, Glenn Maxwell and Mohammed Siraj.

SRH: Kane Williamson, Abdul Samad and Umran Malik.

Ahmedabad Franchise: Hardik Pandya, Rashid Khan and Shubman Gill.

Lucknow Franchise: KL Rahul, Marcus Stoinis and Ravi Bishnoi.

Ahmedabad, Kolkata to host upcoming white-ball series against West Indies

In a bid to cut down the travel and the movement of the teams, officials, broadcasters and other stakeholders during the prevalent Covid-19 outbreak in the country, the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) on Saturday decided to change the schedule for India’s upcoming home series against West Indies.

As per the revised schedule, the six white ball games scheduled for next month featuring three ODIs and as many T20Is, will now be held only in Ahmedabad and Kolkata.

Earlier, the six games were scheduled to be held between February 6 and 20 across six venues – Ahmedabad, Jaipur, Kolkata, Cuttack, Visakhapatnam and Thiruvananthapuram.

Issuing a statement, the Indian board said: “The BCCI today announced a change in venues for the upcoming Paytm West Indies’ Tour of India. The West Indies will arrive here for a white-ball series comprising three ODIs and as many T20Is.”

“The three ODIs will now be played at the Narendra Modi Stadium, Ahmedabad and three T20Is will be held at the Eden Gardens, Kolkata. The decision to limit the series to two venues instead of six as originally announced has been done to mitigate biosecurity risks by cutting down on travel and movement of the teams, match officials, broadcasters, and other stakeholders,” it added.

Earlier, the BCCI Tours and Fixtures Committee had reportedly recommended that the upcoming three-match One-Day International (ODI) series and the three-match T20I series against West Indies to be played in Ahmedabad and Kolkata.

Meanwhile, reports also suggest that West Indies Cricket don’t have any issues with the last-minute change in venues as the Windies Cricket board had alreay confirmed that they will be happy to accept any changes as long as the strict Covid protocols are followed as their priority is nothing but players’ safety.

“A request for such a change has not reached to me as yet. But we accept such operational actions by local boards in the interest of what is best for implementing health protocols,” CWI chief Ricky Skerritt was quoted as saying by Cricbuzz.

The Windies team is scheduled to arrive in Ahmedabad on February 1 following which they will undergo a three-day isolation period. The tourist will begin their practice sessions in the next two days before the matches begin.

Notably, Team India have a packed home schedule in the ongoing year with the focus on the T20 World Cup, scheduled to be staged in Australia later this year.

After the West Indies tour, India are slated to play a T20 series against Sri Lanka and South Africa at home.

Earlier in December 2021, the emergence of several Covid-19 positive cases in the West Indies camp in Karachi has led to the postponement of three-match ODI series between Windies and hosts Pakistan.

The two boards – Pakistan Cricket board (PCB) and West Indies Cricket Board (WICB) – had then jointly decided to push the ODI series to June 2022.

Revised schedule (India vs West Indies): 

February 6  – 1st ODI – Ahmedabad
February 9 – 2nd ODI – Ahmedabad
February 11 – 3rd ODI – Ahmedabad
February 16 – 1st T20I – Kolkata
February 18 – 2nd T20I – Kolkata
February 20 – 3rd T20I – Kolkata

PSL 2022: 3 players, 5 support staffs of different franchises test positive for Covid-19

Three cricketers and five members of the support staff from different franchises have tested positive for Covid-19 ahead of the upcoming seventh edition of the Pakistan Super League (PSL), the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) has announced.

According to a statement issued by the Pakistan board, PCB’s Chief Operating Officer (COO) Salman Naseer, who is also the tournament director of the domestic T20 league, revealed that more than 250 tests were conducted since Thursday following which eight people returned positive for the virus. These eight people included three players and five support staff members.

“As per latest results received, in over 250 tests conducted since Thursday, three players and five support staff members have tested positive and have been isolated,” Naseer said.

As per reports, the tests were conducted at the time of the hotel check-in and all the people were negative 48 hours prior to their arrival at the hotel.

Meanwhile, the statement further informed that the players and officials, who had tested negative, were allowed to enter the biosecure bubble and will resume training from January 24 – after completing the isolation period and receiving two negative COVID-19 testing results.

Moreover, Naseer informed that as a precautionary measure, the PCB had started pre-emptive testing of hotel and PCB staff from January 14. The PCB COO also said that the other support staff and hotel staff who had tested positive were released and are now isolated at their homes.

“The PCB remains committed to creating a safe and secure environment for all participants so that they can play and perform to the best of their abilities. In the environment that we presently live in, there will be positive cases but we have robust health and safety plans to ensure the event is played and concluded within the duration of January 27 to February 27,” Naseer said.

Amid the massive spike in Covid-19 infections, the PCB had finalised the health and safety protocols for the upcoming seventh PSL edition and had acknowledged the players and the people associated with the tournament in this regard recently.

Earlier, the Pakistan board had said that anyone who fails to follow the protocols will face five penalties depending on the nature of the violation, which includes five to 25% and 25% to 50% match fee deductions. As per the PCB, serious violations could lead to elimination from the team and the committee will have the right to impose severe punishment on different cases of violation.

The list of minor violations include several things such as not keeping a distance of six feet, sharing water bottles, kits, towels, and different items, shaking hands before or after the matches, not picking up laundry from the ground or dressing room, using isolation rooms without permission, getting physiotherapy or massages without a mask, getting physiotherapy for more than 15 minutes, etc.

Significantly, after the abrupt postponement of the West Indies tour of Pakistan due to the emergence of Covid-19 cases inside the secure bio-bubble, the Pakistan Cricket Board PCB is extra cautious for the upcoming PSL season.

In December 2021, the Covid-19 outbreak in the West Indies camp had led to the postponement of the ODI series between touring West Indies and hosts Pakistan. The ODI series will now be played in June 2022.

After the development, Naseer had said that the recent experience has made the board extra cautious for the upcoming seventh edition of the T20 League.

Meeting between BCCI, IPL owners on January 22: Reports

Ahead of the upcoming season of the Indian Premier League (IPL), the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) is planning a meeting with all the franchise owners on Saturday

As per reports, the meeting, which will be held virtually, will be to take a call on the potential venues for the upcoming season, which is likley to begin on on April 2. However, no confirmation on the timing of the virtual session has been revealed till now.

“It was supposed to be tomorrow (January 22) but we have not received confirmation as yet,” multiple franchise officials were quoted as saying by Cricbuzz. They added that they are awaiting a formal communication from the Indian board BCCI.

Meanwhile, a report in Cricbuzz claimed that Brijesh Patel has confirmed that the meeting will be hel on Saturday.

Notably, the main agenda of the meeting will be to decide the venues of IPL 2022. Moreover, the BCCI is expected to apprise the franchise owners of the planning and the status of the upcoming auction.

Even as reports had suggested that South Africa and Sri Lanka are the stand-by options due to prevalent Covid-19 scenarion in India, it has been learnt the the board wants to stage the lucrative tournament in home.

Notably, the BCCI was forced to partially host the previous season in the UAE.

Notably, the full 2020 season and half of the 2021 IPL season were staged in the UAE due to the global pandemic.

At present, India is witnessing a massive spike in Covid-19 cases and if things don’t improve in the coming months, the Indian board would once again be compelled to shift the cash-rich league to South Africa or Sri Lanka.

A recent report in Indian Express had said that the BCCI was extremely pleased with the current arrangements made by Cricket South Africa (CSA) on the ongoing India tour and as a result, it was looking at the rainbow nation as a viable option if situaton demands.

Significantly, South Africa had also hosted the 2009 edition of IPL due to the general elections in India.

Meanwhile, the report also suggested that the island nation of Sri Lanka is also part of Plan B for the Indian board.

Notably, the upcoming 15th season is all set to be the longest-ever with the addition of the two new teams – Lucknow and Ahmedabad recently.

Although the BCCI had staged the previous two seasons in the Middle East, it is now looking for a new venue as it doesn’t want to be over-dependent on the UAE every time and also the time difference would suit the players in the rainbow nation.

“We can’t be dependent on UAE all the time so we decided to explore more options, South Africa’s time difference also works out well for the players,” said a BCCI official as quoted by Indian Express.

According to the report, the arrangements in South Africa for the ongoing three-Test series has pleased the BCCI.

Few days back, an another report in the Time of India (ToI) had suggested that the BCCI is mullling to organise the entire league in Maharashtra, across four venues – Brabourne Stadium and Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai, DY Patil Stadium in Navi Mumbai and Maharashtra Cricket Association Stadium (MCA) in Gahunje in Pune however, the rising Covid cases led to the postponement of the Ranji Trophy, women’s T20 league and has now forced the Indian board to redraw the IPL 2022 schedule even as it had wanted the upcoming season to be held in India.