New Zealand have suffered a major blow ahead of their T20I series against Bangladesh. Batsman Finn Allen has returned COVID-19 positive on his arrival in Dhaka despite being fully-vaccinated. The 22-year-old had notably flown directly from Heathrow (England) to Bangladesh on an Emirates flight, post his assignment in England where he was playing for Birmingham Phoenix in 'The Hundred'.
The cricketer is currently quarantined at the team's hotel in Dhaka. Notably, Bangladesh Cricket Board’s chief medical officer is currently treating Allen, who is experiencing moderate symptoms. The Kiwi player is also in constant contact with NZC’s chief medical officer. BLACKCAPS doctor Pat McHugh will be monitoring the cricketer during his stay in quarantine.
BLACKCAPS release an official statement to provide details
In an official statement released on Tuesday, BLACKCAPS said, "Allen, who represented the Birmingham Phoenix in England’s new Hundred competition, is fully-vaccinated and passed all his pre-departure tests in England - before testing positive 48 hours after arrival in Dhaka. He has been quarantined at the team’s hotel and immediate advice is that he is experiencing moderate symptoms."
It must be noted that Allen is now undergoing treatment and will also have to serve a statutory period of isolation as per the protocols. The 22-year-old will be allowed to join the squad only after he has has tested negative for COVID-19 on consecutive days.
It's really unfortunate for Finn: Mike Sandle
BLACKCAPS manager Mike Sandle said, “It’s really unfortunate for Finn. He’s comfortable at the moment and hopefully he’ll recover quickly; test negative and be cleared and approved for discharge as soon as possible."
He added that the Bangladesh cricket authorities have been extremely professional in their response and the Kiwis were grateful to them for that. Sandle revealed that BCB are treating the matter very seriously.
New Zealand players to serve 3-day in-room isolation
The other New Zealand team members, who have landed in Bangladesh from Auckland, would now be serving a minimum three-day period of in-room isolation at team hotel in Dhaka. There is also a likely possibility that Finn Allen might have to miss the upcoming T20I series. However, the final decision on the same will be taken in coming days. The series opener is scheduled to take place on September 1 at the Sher-e-Bangla National Cricket Stadium in Dhaka.