As Team India brace up for a Test series against Australia, they will observe a two-weeks quarantine period once they touch down the continent for the much anticipated tour later this year, said Cricket Australia acting chief Nick Hockley.
Hockley’s statement is completely opposite to BCCI President Sourav Ganguly’s thoughts, who had already made it clear that he was not in a favour of a two-week quarantine period for team India once they disembark in Australia.
Following the official postponement of the World Cup T20 in Australia, Hockley assured all the players and support staff will be provided with the best of the facilities to train within the quarantine rules.
“The two-week quarantine is pretty well-defined. What we are working on is making sure that even within that quarantine environment, the players have got the absolute best training facilities, so that their preparation for the matches is as optimal as it can possibly be,” Hockely was quoted as saying by ESPNcricinfo.
“We’ll obviously take the guidance of the health experts and the authorities. Whether it’s a hotel on-site or hotels in close proximity to venues, it’s certainly about creating that environment where we are minimising risk of infections and creating a bio-secure environment is the absolute priority.”
Not just the visitors, but also the IPL-returned Australian players will have to undergo a mandatory two-week quarantine period.
The on-going series between England and West Indies, which also marks the resumption of international cricket post the Covid-19 pandemic break, is being played in a bio-secure environment with the teams’ accommodation arranged on-site.
“There’s a huge amount at stake if we are unable to do that. Certainly the fact that the Adelaide Oval has a hotel…it does provide a facility not dissimilar to Old Trafford or Ageas Bowl where the hotels are integrated into venue,” said Hockely.
In the current light of the situations, the Adelaide Oval and its newly constructed hotel, built on the ground’s eastern side, is considered as the best place for creating a bio-bubble.
“It’s widely known and it’s unlikely that international travel restrictions would have lifted by the time that India will be due to come into the country,” he said.
“Clearly there will be testing regimes. We will be able to test people before that they get on to the plane and it is the nature of the situation of making sure we have the quarantine arrangements in line with government and health authority protocols.
“The key thing for the players is that there’s regular testing and that we appropriately quarantine them when they come in and all of those plans are currently in development.”
Now that the T20 World Cup is postponed indefinitely, the BCCI is eyeing on the September-November window to hold the Indian Premier League, in all probability in the UAE.
“I think the BCCI have made no secrets that they are considering what that means for the IPL,” Hockley said. “For us it’s about getting a bit of an understanding and certainty around what that means. Clearly in a normal course, some of our best players are obviously top picks for those IPL teams.
“It’s a bit premature to speculate on that. We need to understand what the plans are if any and once we understand that we will make decisions accordingly.”