India Vs Sri Lanka series pushed back after SL support staff test Covid-19 positive

Colombo: India’s tour of Sri Lanka has hit a roadblock after emergence of two Covid-19 positive cases in the home team’s camp has delayed the start of the ODI series by at least four days, and left open the possibility of its cancellation if more cases occur.

Sri Lanka batting coach Grant Flower and team performance analyst Shirantha Niroshana have both tested positive and the entire team, which arrived from England this week, has been put in isolation.

Although the two boards are yet to make an official statement, it looks likely that all six matches would be played within a period of 10-11 days in case there are no more positive cases.

There are also concerns that if more positive cases emerge in the Sri Lanka camp, the series could even be cancelled. That would mean that the Indian team, which has already spent 12 days in Sri Lanka, would have to return home without playing single a match.

A report in espncricinfo.com has put the tentative dates for the ODIs as July 17, 19 and 21. The report adds that the T20 Internationals will be played on July 24, 25 and 27.

However, neither Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) nor the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) were able to confirm to IANS about the dates.

Earlier, SLC had issued a statement revealing the second positive case, of Niroshana, in its camp on Friday after the first one on Thursday.

“He [Niroshana] was found to be positive, following a PCR test carried out among the national players, coaches, and support staff yesterday, following the identification of Grant Flower as Covid-19 positive,” Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) said in a statement on Friday.

It is unlikely that the Indian team will extend its stay beyond July 27.

Cancellation of the series may put SLC in a spot of bother, as the cash-strapped board is looking to earn a whopping $12 million dollars from the series.

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