Pakistan suffer another blow in New Zealand as two more members test positive for COVID-19

Pakistan suffer another blow in New Zealand as two more members test positive for COVID-19

The entire squad is still under isolation and NZC and the country's health ministry is yet to give them permission to train.

Pakistan and Pakistan Shaheens squads
Pakistan and Pakistan Shaheens squads. (Photo Source: PCB/Twitter)

Pakistan’s tour of New Zealand has been thrown into further chaos after two more members of their contingent tested positive for Covid-19. The recent development means that 10 of Pakistan’s 53-man squad have contracted the dreaded virus in New Zealand, a country which has managed to keep the pandemic well under control.

Earlier, six members had tested positive on November 24 when the team arrived in New Zealand and began its compulsory 14-day stay in managed isolation. In the wake of the positive test results, New Zealand Cricket had warned the tourists of dire consequences with reports suggesting that the Pakistan team was in danger of being deported. NZC had stated that members of the Pakistan squad breached strict biosecurity protocols on the first day of their 14-day isolation.

A few days later, more members tested positive. And the latest development has further put a question mark on the series. New Zealand’s Ministry of Health confirmed the latest development. The ministry also confirmed that both the members are historical cases.

“Two members of the Pakistan men’s cricket team we reported yesterday as under investigation tested positive at day 6 routine testing. These people are confirmed as having historical infections, and will be counted in our total as they have not been counted overseas,” the Ministry of Health said in a statement.

“The team is scheduled to have its routine day 9 tests today. Decisions around exemptions from managed isolation requirements which would allow the team to train are still under consideration,” the statement added.

A question mark on the tour

The way things have unfolded in the last few days, there is a big question mark over the upcoming series. NZC has already made it clear that it would not shy away from deporting the Pakistan team and the recent positive test results are a further blow to the upcoming series. Moreover, Pakistan is also unlikely to get sufficient time to train for the series.

The entire squad is still under isolation and NZC and the country’s health ministry is yet to give them permission to train. The first match of the three-T20I series is scheduled to take place on December 18. Following the T20Is, both teams are scheduled to play two Tests.