In a dramatic development, five Indian players namely Rohit Sharma, Rishabh Pant, Shubman Gill, Prithvi Shaw and Navdeep Saini have been placed in isolation for potential breach of COVID-19 protocols. Meanwhile, Cricket Australia and the BCCI have launched an investigation after a video of five players dining at a restaurant in Melbourne went viral on social media platforms.
A statement by Cricket Australia said that all five players had been separated from the Indian and Australian squads but will still train ‘in accordance with the strict protocols that have been put in place to ensure the ongoing safety of all members of the Indian and Australian squads.’
The statement by Cricket Australia added, “The BCCI and CA are investigating the matter and seeking to determine whether the outing constitutes a breach of biosecurity protocols. In the interim, on the advice of the Australian and Indian medical teams, the aforementioned players have been placed in isolation as a precaution. This will include separating the group of players from the broader Indian and Australian squads when traveling and at the training venue.”
A Twitter user had shared a video of five players dining at a restaurant in Melbourne. He had also claimed to have paid for their meal.
Bc mere saamne waale table par gill pant sharma saini fuckkkkkk pic.twitter.com/yQUvdu3shF
— Navaldeep Singh (@NavalGeekSingh) January 1, 2021
The fan, who posted the video, had first claimed to have hugged Pant. However, he later issued a clarification saying that Pant never hugged him. “Pant never hugged me it was all said in excitement we maintained social distance all thru:) Apologies for miscommunication,” he tweeted.
India and Australia are set to play the third Test of the ongoing Border-Gavaskar trophy starting 4 January. The series is currently levelled 1-1 after India beat Australia by eight wickets in the Boxing Day Test.
Sharma, who had flown to Australia midway through the series, recently completed his 14-day mandatory quarantine. It’s not clear whether all he will be considered for selection for the third Test.