NZC concerned over player security amid COVID upsurge in India; monitoring travel ban

NZC concerned over player security amid COVID upsurge in India; monitoring travel ban

Notably, India has been witnessing a huge upsurge in new COVID-19 infections, with over 3 lakh cases being reported across the nation in the last three days.

New Zealand
Trent Boult of New Zealand. (Photo by Joe Allison/Getty Images)

New Zealand Cricket (NZC) is monitoring the situation regarding the travel ban from India due to the surge in coronavirus cases and is in contact with the Indian Premier League (IPL) franchises. On Thursday (8th April 2021) New Zealand temporarily suspended entry for those travelling from India, as per local media reports. This comes after a sudden surge in COVID-19 cases in India in the recent past.

As many as 17 of the 23 new COVID-19 cases in New Zealand are people who had arrived from India, leading the government to take the call of suspension of entry. The ban will commence on Sunday and will remain in place until April 28, New Zealand Herald reported.

Notably, India has been witnessing a huge upsurge in new COVID-19 infections, with over 3 lakh cases being reported across the nation in the last three days. Owing to the situation, the recent edition of the IPL is being conducted behind closed doors.

“We’re monitoring the situation and are in contact with the IPL franchises to keep the lines of communication open because the tournament’s due to go for some time,” New Zealand Herald quoted NZC public affairs manager Richard Boock as saying.

“We’re prepared to discuss all contingencies if the situation warrants. For argument’s sake, if it occurred with one of the test players, it might make more sense for them to continue on to England [for the test tour and world championship final],” he added further.

Eight New Zealand players in India for IPL 2021

Eight players from New Zealand, namely Kane Williamson, Trent Boult, Mitchell Santner, Kyle Jamieson, Jimmy Neesham, Tim Seifert, Adam Milne, and Lockie Ferguson are present in India to participate in the 14th edition of the Indian Premier League, which commences with the clash of defending champions Mumbai Indians (MI) and Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) at MA Chidambaram Stadium, Chennai from 9th April 2021.

Claiming the security of the players to be their responsibility, Jacinda Ardern, New Zealand Prime Minister, stated “Ultimately these decisions around travel into high-risk countries generally will come down to individuals, but also if it’s a workforce, their employers. So those are judgments they need to make”.