Clouds of uncertainly loom over the Manchester Test after three support staff members have tested Covid-19 positive.
Head coach Ravi Shastri and two other support staff members have been ruled out for the Manchester Test. England will try hard to bounce back at Manchester to end the series on an even note. India has established a 2-1 lead aver winning the Oval Test today (Monday).
The visitors will have to manage without Head Coach Shastri, bowling coach Bharat Arun and fielding coach R. Sridhar. The trio has been reported for Covid-19 infection. The team will travel to Manchester for the fifth and final Test. The senior support staff members will stay back in London. All three have been quarantined there.
Physiotherapist Nitin Patel was also isolated. He was found negative in the RT-PCR report. The other three have been confirmed Cobid-19 positive in the RT-PCR reports. All the four were put in isolation after Shastri was found Covid-19 positive in the lateral flow test.
Arun, Sridhar and Patel were close contacts of Shastri.
The positive RT-PCR reports have raised serious doubts about the status of the fifth and final Test, states a report by Sportstar. The England and Wales Cricekt Board and the Board of Control for Cricket in India, as well as the team management are treading cautiously, the report states.
With the three coaches starting to develop mild symptoms, rest of the Indian contingent had also take the lateral flow test and the RT-PCR tests before the fifth and final day of the match. But for the three coaches, the entire squad was reported negative.
The fifth Test is scheduled to start from Friday.
It if feared that more members of the squad can catch infection. At least one of the three coaching staff members had used the recovery table in the dressing room. The same table was used by the players on the third day of the Oval Test.
However, Patel along with the three other Covid-19 positive coaches will stay in quarantine for a minimum ten days as per the health protocols in England. All four are ruled out for the fifth Test it the match goes ahead as per schedule.
India also had twin injury concerns. Rohit Sharma and Cheteshwar Pujara could not take to the field as England were clinically dismissed on the fifth and final day. Kohli and Pujara have reportedly undergone left knee and left ankle scans respectively.