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India U-19 captain, VC and 4 others test positive for Covid at World Cup | Cricket News

NEW DELHI: The U-19 India team at the U-19 World Cup at Trinidad and Tobago (T&T) has witnessed an outbreak of Covid-19 infections. Six boys, including captain Yash Dhull and vice-captain Shaikh Rasheed, tested positive before Wednesday’s match against Ireland. Nishant Sindhu walked out to lead the team as the team management and selectors struggled to put up a playing XI.
TOI understands Dhull, Rashid and Aaradhya Yadav tested positive in the rapid antigen test on the morning of the match while Vasu Vats, Manav Parakh and Siddharth Yadav’s RT-PCR tests came positive last night. Interestingly, neither the International Cricket Council (ICC) nor the Indian cricket board (BCCI) released a statement on the outbreak even as Sindhu went for the toss instead of Dhull. Dhull and Rasheed were at the venue before the start of the game.
The team had travelled to T&T after winning their opening match against South Africa in Guyana on January 15. India are due to play their last group match on January 22 against Uganda at the same venue.
ICC, on its part, went into the tournament with a commitment to finish the tournament irrespective of Covid cases. “We will get some positive cases at some stage and we will be flexible with the scheduling. We have already adjusted once to accommodate the late arrival of Afghanistan. One positive case won’t stop a match,” ICC CEO Geoff Allardice had said last week.
Unlike the recent Men’s T20 World Cup in UAE, ICC preferred to have multiple venues which needed travel for this tournament. “The teams travel only after the group stage. We have got four islands involved because we needed the flexibility and contingencies if changes were made to the schedule. It’s not a strict bubble. We ensured there’s some freedom given they will be there for a month to enjoy the experience of being part of such a tournament,” Allardice had told TOI.
It will be interesting to see how the ICC navigates after this outbreak. A win against Ireland is likely to guarantee India a place in the quarterfinals which don’t start before January 26.

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