Krunal Pandya’s positive test sparked jitters, but India-SL series to stay on course

The second T20 international between India and Sri Lanka will take place as rescheduled on Wednesday, July 28, according to NDTV, after all eight players deemed close contacts of Covid-positive Krunal Pandya returned a negative test. However, the all-rounder will remain in isolation for seven days and will not travel back home with the rest of the contingent on July 30, the report added.

Earlier on Tuesday, Krunal had tested positive for the dreaded virus after rapid antigen tests were conducted ahead of the second T20I. Following his positive test result, the second T20I, originally scheduled to be played on Tuesday, July 27, was postponed to Wednesday. BCCI’s medical team had identified eight members of the Indian contingent as close contacts, who have now been cleared to partake in the remainder of the series even as the isolation protocol is set to keep Krunal out of action.

The series was earlier put in grave danger when Sri Lanka’s batting coach Grant Flower and data analyst G T Niroshan tested positive for the dreaded virus ahead of the series opener. As a result, the commencement of the limited-overs assignment had to be pushed back by five days, with the series finally kicking off on July 18 instead of July 13. It also meant an annoying extended quarantine period for the squad members.

India’s Test contingent in England too faced COVID setbacks, with Rishabh Pant joining the squad late in Durham after returning a positive test and isolating at an acquaintance’s place in London. Bowling coach Bharat Arun, Wriddhiman Saha and Abhimanyu Easwaran also had to endure ten days of isolation after being deemed close contacts of training assistant Dayananda Garani, who had caught the virus as well.

Broadcast Schedule

England v West Indies 2024
ENG v WI 3rd Test, Edgbaston
26th July to 30th July
Start time: 11:00 am BST