Bangladesh strengthens COVID bio-bubble for home series against Australia

By | July 28, 2021

As part of the “unprecedented” safety protocol, Bangladesh players and officials will enter the hotel straight from the airport upon arrival from Zimbabwe on Thursday morning. Australia are set to arrive in the afternoon.  

They all will be in hotel quarantine for three days. The five matches will be played in a week from Aug 3.

BCB chief physician Debashish Chowdhury said there are three key differences between the safety measures taken this time and those of the past.

The authorities will arrange exclusive hotel accommodation for the players and others involved with the series.

Only some permanent guests, who work in the government’s development projects, will be allowed in another block of the hotel. 

The formalities of the airport including the Australian team’s immigration will be done under special arrangements.

The authorities will skip the reception of the Australian team via the airport lounge.

Some of the changes were applied in the past. For example, the players under COVID bio-bubble must be in quarantine for 10 days before the series.

During the new series, the groundsmen will not be allowed to approach the cricketers although they are also under COVID bio-bubble security. They have to leave the field at least one or two hours earlier before the start of a game or practice.

They can enter the ground under special arrangements and adequate physical distancing if rain strikes during a game.

The BCB officials are currently avoiding the main entrance to its headquarters as it is adjacent to the cricketers’ dressing rooms.

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They are using an alternative entrance for the last couple of days.

Despite the safety measures, cricketers or team officials had tested positive for COVID-19 in the past.

The Indian Premier League tournament was suspended due to a spike in COVID infections amid bio-bubble security.

Recently, the Australia-West Indies series was rescheduled after one of the Caribbean supporting staffers tested positive for the coronavirus.

The authorities have also set guidelines in case someone, including ground and hotel staffers, contracts the coronavirus.

“We will try our best to be careful,” Debashish said.

The health ministry, sports ministry, civil aviation ministry and other government agencies are helping the BCB to maintain the bio-bubble.

BCB CEO Nizam Uddin Ahmed hopes that they will be able to finish the series successfully.

“We’ve arranged two international series under the pandemic situation. Our team have also played abroad. We’ve gained experience about which things we need to focus on, what the requirements are and what we need to be careful about to hold the series successfully,” he said.

Mushfiqur Rahim, Aminul Islam Biplob and Liton Das are not playing in the series due to a strict 10-day quarantine policy of Cricket Australia.

Mushfiqur returned to Bangladesh from Zimbabwe due to family reasons while Aminul returned home following his father’s death.

Liton was scheduled to return home on Wednesday night following illness of one of his relatives.

Tamim Iqbal has already been ruled out of the series with injury.

Australia’s senior cricketers, like David Warner, Steven Smith, Glenn Maxwell, Marcus Stoinis, Aaron Finch, Pat Cummins, Jhye Richardson and Kane Richardson are also not playing in the series due to injuries and personal reasons.

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Australia squad:

Ashton Agar, Wes Agar, Jason Behendorff, Alex Carey, Daniel Christian, Josh Hazlewood, Moise Henriques, Mitchell Marsh, Ben McDermott, Riley Meredith, Josh Philippe, Mitchell Starc, Mitchell Swepson, Ashton Turner, Andrew Tye, Matthew Wade and Adam Zampa.

Bangladesh squad:

Mahmudullah (c), Mohammad Naim Sheikh, Shakib Al Hasan, Soumya Sarkar, Afif Hossain, Shamim Hossain, Nurul Hasan Sohan, Nasim Ahmed, Mehidy Hasan, Mohammad Saifuddin, Mustafizur Rahman, Taskin Ahmed, Shariful Islam, Rubel Hossain, Mosaddek Hossain, Mohammad Mithun and Taijul Islam. – Home