Sporting events under threat after global spike in cases involving new variant


Silverwood and his family are to self-isolate in Melbourne for 10 days while the rest of the squad heads to Sydney for the clash from January 5. However, Australian media reported that England fast bowling coach Jon Lewis, spin coach Jeetan Patel and strength and conditioning boss Darren Veness would also be in isolation.

Previously, Australian Test captain Pat Cummins had to sit out the second test in Adelaide as he was ruled out under South Australian Covid-19 rules because he was considered a close contact.

The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) and Cricket South Africa (CSA) have reiterated the safety of cricketers, but the rise in cases in the country is cause for concern for both teams. Prior to the start of the India tour, the ASC had postponed the domestic events including Round 4, the 4-day ASC Division 2 National Series matches which were scheduled to take place from December 2-5. .

Last month, the International Cricket Council (ICC) had to cancel the Women’s Cricket World Cup qualifier in Zimbabwe after a Sri Lankan support staff member tested positive for Covid-19 and this prompted the ICC to decide to cancel the match between the West Indies and Sri Lanka. Later, ICC Events Manager Chris Tetley informed of the cancellation of the tournament.

In India, the I-League matches on December 30 and 31 have been postponed due to the Covid-19 outbreak in the teams. The Indian Football Federation (AIFF) league committee had to intervene following new challenges and decided to postpone the next round matches scheduled for December 30 and 31 after the detection of positive Covid-19 cases among the participating teams.

However, the fate of the I-League is still up in the air. Meanwhile, the AIFF released a statement on Wednesday, saying all players, staff and referees will be tested regularly to prevent another outbreak.

One of the most prestigious football leagues in the world, the English Premier League has been hit hard by Covid-19 as clubs reel from the spread of the virus. The League has reported a record 103 positive cases which include numerous players, coaches and support staff over the past week; However, the PL board ensured all kinds of help to the clubs, including the rescheduling of matches.

Another well-known football league, La Liga de España, has also been hit hard by the continuing wave of Covid-19 cases in Spain.

Spanish top club Barcelona announced on Wednesday that three more players – Ousmane Dembele, Samuel Umtiti and Gavi – had tested positive. The Spanish club have already grappled with the cases in their side as Clement Lenglet, Dani Alves, Jordi Alba and Alejandro Balde contracted the virus earlier this week. According to Spanish sports newspaper ‘Diario AS’, the first two days back to training saw 86 cases of the virus reported by clubs.

The NBA has also postponed or rescheduled many games due to players and staff entering NBA health and safety protocols as the country is hit hard by the new wave of pandemics.

Even though many stars and officials have called for the stoppage of activities, Football Delhi Chairman Shaji Prabhakaran has a different view on stopping sporting events due to Covid-19.

“Stopping the events is not going to help us. The waves come and go and we have to live with them. Sports activities are necessary to strengthen the immune system. We only need to improve the mechanisms to fight the pandemic. “Right now we have a different kind of bio-bubble. Every event has a different bio-bubble. EPL players have to travel to play the matches that exposed them to the virus, whereas events like the Premier Indian League, Indian Super League, Pro Kabaddi League and I-league have different bio-bubbles where everyone involved should stay in a safe place,” he said.

Patna Pirates Pro Kabaddi League franchise coach Ram Mehar Singh said they were happy to live in a secure bio-bubble and each team should follow Covid-19 guidelines for the smooth running of the event.

“We are certainly keeping abreast of the ever-changing Covid situation in the country. However, we have very strict protocols during matches, which are being followed without compromise by all staff related to Pro Kabaddi League Season 8. No one is allowed to leave the premises since the start of our training and will continue until the end of the competition,” the coach said.

“We are all vaccinated with double doses. However, we still ensure that every 48 hours the RTPCR is carried out to ensure the safety of players and others. We are committed to making kabaddi league a success, sure and memorable for all. I urge kabaddi fans to wear masks and avoid crowded places more than ever, especially during New Year celebrations,” he added.




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