In a big update coming in with regards to the India's ongoing tour of Sri Lanka, the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) has added cricketers Ishan Porel, Sandeep Warrier, Arshdeep Singh, Sai Kishore and Simarjeet Singh to the main squad for the remainder of the series. The players travelled with the team to the island country as net bowlers. The development comes after there was a coronavirus case in the Indian camp, with Krunal Pandya testing positive on Tuesday. Moreover, other players, who were in close contact with Krunal were also mandated to be in isolation which meant India did not have enough players to field a proper XI for the remaining two matches of the T20I series.
While the first match of the three-match series was already conducted on Sunday, Krunal testing positive for COVID-19 on Tuesday, forced the prompt postponement of the second match - scheduled on the same day - by 24 hours. The second T20I match, the fate of which was uncertain until hours ago, is on schedule for now and will commence at 8 pm (IST).
Extra players have come to the team's rescue: Team official
"The decision to have extra players was a wise move and those players have now come to the team's rescue," a tour official was quoted as saying by Cricbuzz.
This is not the first time COVID-19 had threatened the series. Prior to the start of the tour, COVID-19 had affected the Sri Lankan camp which had forced the rescheduling of all the six matches. The Sri Lanka side had brought home that infection from their tour of England where three of their players and four members of the support staff tested positive for the dreaded virus. The England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) were then forced to field a completely new look side against their subsequent ODI assignment against Pakistan with Ben Stokes at the helm.
Touring teams with jumbo squads is the new norm with the onset of the pandemic and is likely to remain the same for some time to come. Moreover, the entire series being staged at one or two venues, with limited or no crowd and no saliva rule in cricket are seemingly here to stay for a long time.