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England's Moeen Ali tests positive for COVID-19

Last updated on: January 04, 2021 23:22 IST

England's spin-bowling all-rounder Moeen Ali tested positive for COVID-19 during tests done ahead of the Test series in Sri Lanka.

IMAGE: England's spin-bowling all-rounder Moeen Ali tested positive for COVID-19 during tests done ahead of the Test series in Sri Lanka. Photograph: Julian Finney/Getty Images

England all-rounder Moeen Ali has tested positive for COVID-19 upon arriving in Sri Lanka and will self-isolate for 10 days, as will fast bowler Chris Woakes who was deemed a possible close contact, England's cricket board said on Monday.

England are in Sri Lanka for a two-match Test series that begins on January 14, with both matches being played in Galle.

The squad was tested on arrival at the airport in Hambantota and Ali is likely to miss the first test as Sri Lanka's government protocols require the 33-year-old to quarantine for 10 days.


"Chris Woakes has been deemed as a possible close contact, and he will observe a period of self-isolation and further testing," the ECB added.

"The touring party will be PCR tested for a second time on Tuesday morning. At this stage, the team will train for the first time on Wednesday."

The two-match series in Sri Lanka is followed by four tests in India in February and March.

Former Pakistan women's captain Sana Mir tests positive for COVID-19

Former Pakistan cricket team captain Sana Mir has tested positive for COVID-19 while commentating for television during the ongoing final match of the Quaid-e-Azam Trophy in Karachi, according to sources.

Mir, who retired from international cricket last year, has been removed from the commentary team and kept under isolation, the source said.

The other members of the commentary panel also underwent COVID-19 tests in Karachi as they were in close contact with Mir.

The final match, which started on Friday, is being played at the National Stadium in Karachi between Central Punjab and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.

The 34-year-old Mir has played 226 internationals, including 137 as captain from 2009 to 2017, during her glittering 15-year cricketing career. She also captained Pakistan to a gold medal win at the Asia Games in 2010 and 2014. 

After retirement, Mir has been involved in cricket as an expert and a commentator in domestic events and the Pakistan Super League.

The Pakistan Cricket Board has been enforcing strict health protocols with the players, support staff and umpires living in a bio-secure bubble at their hotels.

The PCB has barred media representatives to move out of the third floor of the stadium where the commentary box is positioned while the players and officials are not allowed to go upstairs and interact with anyone.

Press conferences of the players and officials are also carried out through video links.

Shakib back in Bangladesh fold, Mashrafe out of ODI mix

All-rounder Shakib Al Hasan returned to Bangladesh's preliminary squads for the upcoming home series against West Indies after serving a one-year ban but former captain Mashrafe Mortaza has been left out of the ODI mix.

Shakib, 33, had been slapped with the ban last year for failing to report corrupt approaches but was recalled in both the test and one-day squads on Monday for Bangladesh's first international series since March.

Beginning on January 20, Bangladesh will play three ODIs against West Indies followed by two tests next month.

Mashrafe's omission comes at a time when speculation is rife about the future of Bangladesh's longest-serving captain.

"We respect him, he has done a lot for the country," chief selector Minhajul Abedin said of the 37-year-old bowler.

"I have spoken to him in detail, so there's not going to be any misunderstanding. It was a tough decision but we have to consider the reality, and keep looking forward."

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