Aakash Chopra raises questions over commencement of England tour after 10 Pakistan players test COVID-19 positive
The Men in Green are slated to play three Tests and as many T20Is against the host nation.
Updated - Jun 24, 2020 9:24 pm
Pakistan were prepared to leave for England tour for their first sporting assignment amid the coronavirus pandemic. However, as many as 10 players have tested positive for the virus ahead of the much-anticipated tour. Shadab Khan, Haris Rauf and Haider Ali were the first ones to contract the virus. To make things worse, seven more Pakistan players were also tested positive, instilling a sense of fear across the cricket fraternity.
Pakistan’s England tour has also been put in jeopardy and many fans are questioning the feasibility of the series. While West Indies are already in England, looking to kickstart the sport, none of their players was tested positive when they were leaving for the tour.
Pakistan are set to leave for England on June 28 but now, 10 of their players have to undergo a mandatory isolation period of 14 days, after which they will be tested again. They will be allowed to join their teammates in England only if they test negative. Furthermore, it will be mandatory for them to isolate themselves before joining the team training sessions.
With so many complications in the process, cricketer-turned-commentator Aakash Chopra has raised his doubts over the feasibility of the England-Pakistan series. The Men in Green are slated to play three Tests and as many T20Is against the host nation. However, the news of 10 players being tested positive has raised questions over the tour’s safety.
Where did so many players catch the virus from?: Aakash Chopra
The players were advised to take all the possible precautions and follow the social distancing norms. But still, as many as 10 players couldn’t escape from the novel virus due to a rapid increase in the COVID-19 cases in Pakistan. Pointing out the risk involved in the series, Chopra asked two questions through his Twitter.
Chopra was baffled by hearing the news and asked if the England tour will go ahead as per schedule. He even questioned where did so many players catch the virus from.
“Total of 10 players tested positive for #Covid_19. Wishing all of them a speedy recovery…two questions beg to be asked—Will the tour to England go ahead at all? And 2. Where did so many players catch the virus from?” tweeted Chopra.
Total of 10 players tested positive for #Covid_19. Wishing all of them a speedy recovery…two questions beg to be asked—Will the tour to England go ahead at all? And 2. Where did so many players catch the virus from? https://t.co/dP8KDtirPj
— Aakash Chopra (@cricketaakash) June 23, 2020
Despite 10 of the 35 players being tested positive, the PCB released a statement while opening up on the fate of the much-awaited tour. PCB CEO Wasim Khan is confident that the series is very much on the cards this summer. The tour is on track and the Pakistan side will depart as per schedule on June 28, according to Wasim Khan.