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Friday July 01, 2022

Pak vs WI: Final T20 back on after latest COVID-19 tests return negative

In addition, PCB has allowed the TV production team and the broadcasters team to go to the stadium

December 16, 2021
West Indies players depart for the National Stadium from their hotel, in Karachi, December 16, 2021. — PCB
West Indies players depart for the National Stadium from their hotel, in Karachi, December 16, 2021. — PCB

KARACHI: The final T20 between Pakistan and West Indies, after an initial setback due to the Windies' players testing COVID-19 positive, was back on track on Thursday after the latest round of testing saw results come back negative.

In addition, the PCB permitted the TV production team and the broadcasters team to go to the stadium and both local and foreign broadcasters have reached the venue.

According to the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB), the teams have left for the stadium.

Reporting from on the ground, Geo News correspondent Atiq ur Rehman said that sirens had begun to sound outside the National Stadium and roads will thus be closed off. "The teams will then arrive within 10 minutes," he said.

Meanwhile, security personnel, ground staff and commentators also reached the stadium.

The last T20 match between the two sides was scheduled to be played today at the National Stadium Karachi but everything was put on hold after five more members of the West Indian squad tested positive for COVID-19 including three players.

The future of the three-match ODI series still hangs in the balance and a final decision in this regard will be taken after a meeting between the officials of the PCB and Cricket West Indies (CWI).

"Three players: wicketkeeper/batsman Shai Hope, left-arm spinner Akeal Hosein, allrounder Justin Greaves; along with Assistant Coach Roddy Estwick, and Team Physician Dr Akshai Mansingh returned positive results in the latest round of testing carried out by the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB)," a CWI statement had earlier said.

It had added that all three players will therefore miss the upcoming matches and all five individuals will remain isolated from the rest of the West Indies squad and under the care and supervision of medical officials. 

They were to remain in isolation for 10 days or until they test negative for coronavirus. 

With a total of six players initially ruled out of the tour due to COVID-19 and a finger injury to Devon Thomas (sustained in the 1st T20I), CWI and PCB officials convened a meeting after retesting of all the team members of the touring party  to determine whether the tour can continue or not. 

14 players available for selection

According to sources, the West Indian players were not infected with the Omicron variant and they might have contracted the virus during the 36-hour long flight to Pakistan.

Currently, 14 players of the touring party are available for selection but the series may be called off in case more members are tested positive.

Tour schedule

December 13: 1st T20I, Karachi – Pakistan won by 63 runs

December 14: 2nd T20I, Karachi – Pakistan won by 9 runs

December 16: 3rd T20I, Karachi

December 18: 1st ODI, Karachi

December 20: 2nd ODI, Karachi

December 22: 3rd ODI, Karachi