There is good news for Chennai Super Kings who went through a tumultuous time upon their arrival in the UAE for Indian Premier League (IPL) 2020. All their players and support staff have tested Covid-19 negative in the 1st of the 2 additional tests conducted during their extended quarantine period in Dubai.
Chennai Super Kings camp was hit by Covid-19 as 13 of their members, including 2 players, tested positive for the novel coronavirus during their initial 6-day quarantine period. The 1st of the additional tests was conducted on Monday and the next one will be conducted on September 3.
Subject to clearing the 2nd Covid-19 test, the Chennai Super Kings players will begin training from September 4, according to their Chief Executive Officer Kasi Viswanathan. “We will start training by September 4. We have another test on September 3,” Viswanathan was quoted as saying by ESPNCricinfo.
The 2 players who tested positive for Covid-19 will have to complete the mandatory 14-day quarantine period after which they can begin training, subject to negative results in 2 additional tests. Cardiac screening is also compulsory before resuming team activities. According to the BCCI SOPs, players and support staff who arrive in the UAE should give 3 Tests — Day 1, Day 3, and Day 6. After all three successful tests, players will be allowed to enter the biosecure bubble.
CSK ready to play season opener, if required
Viswanathan also said CSK will be open to playing the season opener on September 19, if required. Media reports claimed the BCCI was hoping to pit Mumbai Indians against Virat Kohli-led Royal Challengers Bangalore in the opening match if CSK request to delay their first match of IPL 2020.
Notably, the BCCI is yet to announce the scheduled for IPL 2020, which will be played from September 19 to November 10 across 3 cities in the UAE.
Chennai Super Kings were the only team to delay training in the UAE as all the other 7 franchises began training over the weekend following negative Covid-19 results.
Notably, CSK were the only team to organise a training camp in India before their departure to the UAE. CEO Viswanathan said he was reluctant to go ahead with the 5-day camp but MS Dhoni was clear in his mind about organising it from August 21 to 25.
Meanwhile, the other franchises wanted the BCCI to issue a stern warning to CSK over the training camp which was held in Chennai. While all the players of other IPL franchises were seen leaving for UAE with masks and PPE kits on, CSK players since their training camps were seen hanging around without following much of the social-distancing protocols.