The number of Coronavirus cases in the Big Bash League continue to increase and has now put the tournament under serious threat after the match between Brisbane Heat and Sydney Sixers, slated to happen on January 5 at the Metricon Stadium, stands cancelled.
The game had already been pushed to Wednesday owing to the infection rate but now has had to be called off as there were not one or two but as many as 12 Coronavirus positives in the Heat side.
As of now, it is being reported that other fixtures involving the Heat remain on schedule.
"In this instance, the decision to postpone tonight's match was the only option available given the number of cases within the Heat squad and the inability to secure the required number of players fit to take the field," Alistair Dobson, Cricket Australia's General Manager of Big Bash League, stated.
Despite the development, the teams' commitment to play their next match against Melbourne Renegades, scheduled for January 6, is a bit surprising as they intend to continue "working through the recruitment and testing requirements for players to take part in that match."
Unfortunately we've had to postpone tonight's Heat v Sixers clash ?
Strikers v Hurricanes will now start at 7:15PM AEDT ⏱ #BBL11 pic.twitter.com/W77tHZ5AQm
— KFC Big Bash League (@BBL) January 5, 2022
The club was unable to recruit enough replacement players: BBL
In an official statement, the Big Bash League confirmed that 12 players from the Heat have returned positive PCR tests and while they did try to go ahead with the match, they were unable to get enough replacements in time for the contest on Wednesday.
"Tonight’s KFC Big Bash League match between Brisbane Heat and Sydney Sixers at Metricon Stadium has been postponed," the statement said.
"Twelve Heat players today returned positive PCR tests for COVID-19 and are currently isolating. Despite its best endeavours, the club was unable to recruit enough replacement players in the 24 hours since the first case was identified to make up the required squad of 13 for tonight’s match," it added.
"The League will advise a new date for the match as soon as possible. Ticket holders for tonight’s match will be contacted directly regarding the refund process," the statement further added.
The news comes hours after it was known that Melbourne Stars captain and star Australian all-rounder Glenn Maxwell tested positive for COVID-19.