The eight Indian cricketers, who were in close contact with Krunal Pandya, tested negative on Tuesday evening. However, they are unlikely to feature in the remaining two T20Is – scheduled on Wednesday and Thursday.
With Krunal testing positive for the virus a few hours before the second T20I was scheduled to begin, the fixture had to be postponed by a day and all the eight players, who were in close contact with him, were isolated. The RT-PCR test, later in the evening, turned out to be negative.
However, speaking to Sportstar from Colombo, Prof. Arjuna de Silva, who is in-charge of Sri Lanka Cricket’s medical committee and oversees the bio-bubble protocols, said that the players will undergo another round of RT-PCR tests on Wednesday morning, before a call can be taken on their availability.
Sources in the BCCI, too, have indicated that even if the results return negative, the eight players could be doubtful for the remainder of the series. India won the first T20I by 38 runs on Sunday and the fact that Krunal tested positive despite being inside the bio-secure environment, has raised questions over the efficacy of the bubble. However, Prof. de Silva and other sources in Sri Lanka Cricket ruled out any possibility of a breach.
It is understood that Krunal complained of a sore throat on Tuesday morning and had to take an antigen test immediately. While the Sri Lanka Cricket is looking for clarity on the isolation and other protocols from the health ministry, there is also a question mark on whether this would delay the travel plans for Prithvi Shaw and Suryakumar Yadav – who are scheduled to fly to England to join the Test team for the series against England.
As per Sri Lanka’s health protocols, Krunal will not be able to travel back to India with other members of the contingent on July 30 and will now have to undergo mandatory isolation and obtain a negative RT-PCR report.