BBL side Melbourne Stars in midst of COVID crisis as 15 test positive

Insight Online News

Melbourne, Dec 31 : Big Bash League (BBL) side Melbourne Stars is in the midst of a massive COVID-19 crisis with seven players and eight support staff testing positive for the virus on Friday, with the team management in emergency talks with Cricket Australia (CA) “to determine the impacts to their schedule”.

CA was forced to postpone the BBL game between Perth Scorchers and Melbourne Stars less than three hours before the start at the Marvel Stadium on Thursday after a Stars support staff member tested positive. But on Friday it was revealed that a total of 15 players and support staff had tested COVID-19 positive.

The Melbourne Stars issued a statement on Friday confirming “seven players and eight support staff have returned a positive test for COVID-19”.

“All Melbourne Stars players and staff undertook PCR testing yesterday (Thursday), after confirmation of a positive case within the support staff. All players and staff members who tested positive are currently isolating for seven days, as per government guidelines. As a precaution, all players who tested negative yesterday (Thursday) will undertake PCR tests again tomorrow (Saturday),” said the Stars statement.

“The Stars are currently working with Cricket Australia in relation to their immediate fixture and will provide an update as soon as possible.”

Stars general manager Blair Crouch conceded that playing cricket with the new Omicron variant evolving was “challenging”.

“First and foremost, we wish everyone affected by this outbreak a quick and speedy recovery. The health and safety of our players and staff will continue to be our priority, especially with the challenges the new Omicron variant presents.

“We are providing all the support we can to players, staff and their families. I’d like to thank the medical teams at both Cricket Victoria and Cricket Australia for their ongoing guidance and support,” said Crouch.

Meanwhile the blockbuster BBL clash between the Adelaide Strikers and Sydney Thunder — one of the showpiece games of the season scheduled later on Friday — could be postponed as a Thunder player has tested COVID positive according to Fox Cricket.

IANS / AGENCY

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