Wednesday’s IPL match between Chennai Super Kings and Rajasthan Royals has been postponed after their bowling coach L Balaji and a staff member tested COVID-19 positive in Delhi. Points Table | Schedule | News
Balaji, who was with the team during their match against Mumbai Indians, has been isolated. This has forced CSK to go into hard quarantine for a week which will mean that matches against Sunrisers Hyderabad (May 7) and Punjab Kings (May 9) also look doubtful.
As per the BCCI’s Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) for the IPL, anyone who has come in contact with an infected person has to undergo six days of hard quarantine and return three negative RT-PCR reports during the course of it.
"Tomorrow's match at the Arun Jaitley Stadium between CSK and RR will be rescheduled as per SOP rules. As Balaji was in contact with the players, all of them have gone into hard quarantine. They are supposed to be tested everyday," a senior BCCI official told PTI on conditions of anonymity.
Even CSK CEO Kasi Viswanathan when contacted informed that BCCI has been told about Balaji's RT-PCR result on Monday. "From our end, we had informed that Mr Balaji has tested positive and as per SOP our players have been isolated," Viswanathan said.
All CSK playing members have tested negative during their scheduled RT-PCR tests.
This is the second IPL match to be rescheduled after Monday's Kolkata Knight Riders vs Royal Challengers Bangalore game was postponed owing to a couple of KKR players — Varun Chakravarthy and Sandeep Warrier -- testing positive.
Even Mumbai Indians vs Sunrisers Hyderabad match which was to be played in evening in Delhi seems to be doubtful after reports emerged that Wriddhiman Saha has tested positive.
Meanwhile, in order to avoid travel and minimize risks, the BCCI is planning to move the rest of Indian Premier League 2021 to Mumbai.
The bio-bubble breach and two Kolkata Knight Riders’ players – Varun Chakravarthy and Sandeep Warrier - testing positive have increased the headache of BCCI.
On one hand BCCI will have to rearrange the schedule, on the other hand it will have to gain the trust of players, especially overseas, in its bio-bubble security and ensure that it doesn’t happen again.
One of the move to avoid travel is to bring the entire IPL back to Mumbai and instead of caravan style finish the tournament in one city.
This was actually BCCI original plan as the city is host to three cricket venues – Wankhede, DY Patil and Brabourne.
All three venues and also respective bio-bubbles were tested during the first leg of IPL this year.