India vs England: After Rishabh Pant, one Team India support staff also tests COVID-19 positive


Troubles are mounting for the Indian cricket team as COVID-19 has started to wreck havoc in United Kingdom. After Rishabh Pant, a support staff member of the Indian team in England has also tested positive for COVID-19. Three other coaching assistants have been quarantined because of this development. The four, along with Rishabh Pant, would not be traveling with the team to Durham.

Pant has tested positive for Covid -19 virus in England and is staying in home isolation at the moment. The support staff member who has tested positive is reportedly Dayanand Garani, Team India’s throwdown specialist, according to news agency ANI. Wicketkeeper-batsman Wriddhiman Saha has now been forced to isolate as well since he is a close contact of Garani.

Pant is home quarantined at his relatives’ place at present and is likely to join the tour party in Durham later.

A Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) source confirmed to news agency PTI that Pant has been in isolation for the past eight days. He is, according to the source, asymptomatic at this point.

“He is in quarantine at an acquaintance’s place and won’t be travelling with the team to Durham on Thursday,” he said without divulging when the 23-year-old will join the squad.

However, he is likely to undergo a COVID-19 test in the next couple of days.

The rest of the squad, sans Pant and the injured Shubman Gill, left for Durham on Thursday from London. Gill had sustained a leg injury earlier this month and the young batsman had left the team’s bio-bubble.

The development comes close on the heels of BCCI secretary Jay Shah sending an e-mail to the Indian contingent, warning it about the rising cases of COVID-19 in the United Kingdom.

The break was given to the players after the World Test Championship against New Zealand, which the team lost last month.

“Yes, one player has tested positive but he has been in isolation for the last eight days. He was not staying in any hotel with the team, so no other player has been affected,” BCCI Vice President Rajiv Shukla told PTI.

“As of now no other player has tested positive. Also you must be aware our secretary Jay Shah has written a letter to all players to maintain protocols,” Shukla added.

It is understood that Pant has been afflicted by the Delta variant which has led to rising number of cases in England. He was seen attending a Euro championship match last month and had even posted pictures on his social media accounts.

He underwent a test after experiencing low grade fever.

(with agency inputs)

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Sagar Biswas

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