‘Quarantine disagreements’ put Bangladesh cricket tour in jeopardy

Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB) President Nazmul Hasan has said it is not possible for Bangladesh national cricket team to tour Sri Lanka under the conditions that has been set by Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC), Bangladesh cricket sources said yesterday (14).

The decision has been taken in a meeting by the BCB board directors in its headquarters at Sher-e-Bangla National Stadium yesterday.

“Bangladesh’s tour of Sri Lanka for a three-match Test series was pushed into uncertainty due to the conditions set by SLC. BCB had been initially informed that the touring contingent would require no Covid-19 quarantine upon reaching Sri Lanka on 27 September. BCB had been told that their team could step on the field from the next day of their arrival to prepare for the series which is scheduled to start on 23 October,” BCB sources have said over the dispute.

Not abandoned yet

“No finality has been reached yet. But they (BCB) are worried about the two-week quarantine requirement. No decision has been taken so far to abandon the tour,” a senior SLC official, though, confirmed The Morning Sports’ yesterday.

However, developments in the ongoing discussions between SLC and BCB have not reached any settlement even by yesterday, mainly on the quarantine period the Bangladeshi players need to undergo here.

Sri Lanka health authorities strict

The local health authorities, considering the Covid-19 situation in the subcontinent, have been adamant that the Bangladeshi cricketers need to be in quarantine, while being inside their hotel without training, for two weeks.

Though the pandemic situation is very much under control in Sri Lanka, the authorities are still is fear of the visitors into the island being stringent on the 14-day essential quarantine period.

Number of members in tour party

Those protocols have put BCB in dilemma. The authorities have advised SLC that the visitors would require a 14-day strict quarantine at the hotel and also that the team should not be more than of 30 members, including the coaching staff.

Restriction over number of members in the team meant BCB’s plan of making its high-performance unit to tour Sri Lanka, alongside the national team, was put in jeopardy.

Sports Minister involves

Meanwhile, Minister of Youth Affairs and Sports Namal Rajapaksa yesterday instructed SLC to look into issues raised by the BCB.

Following BCB’s rejection, the Minister has instructed SLC to negotiate with the National Operations Centre for the Prevention of Covid-19 and reconsider the objections raised by the BCB.

He has further said, “Sri Lanka is well aware that the Covid-19 pandemic is still at large globally and prevention measures are a high priority”.