Players & support who will be participating in the inaugural edition of the Hundred has been asked to stay away from pubs & restaurants in order to avoid the spread of COVID-19. The UK will be relaxing the remaining COVID-19 restrictions on July 19, just two days prior to the start of the Hundred tournament as per the reports by ESPNcricinfo.
A COVID-19 compliance officer has been appointed for each team participating in the Hundred to lessen the risk of whole teams getting in self-isolation if someone from the team tested positive for COVID-19. Recently ECB received criticism for giving relaxation in the bio-bubble as three England cricketers & four members of the support staff have tested positive for COVID-19.
India’s wicket-keeper batsman Rishabh Pant & support staff member Dayanand Garani have also tested positive for COVID-19 in the UK. Tom Harrison, the Chief Executive of the ECB said that the board has decided to give relaxations in the bio-bubble considering the well-being & mental health of the players.
“We want players to feel good about going out & playing in whatever environment they are playing in, whether that’s the hundred, whether that’s a test series against India, whether that is county cricket & the RL50. We want people to be feeling like their life is delivering for them, both at home & as professional cricketer’s men & women. We don’t want to be closeting players in such a place where they feel like the only role they play in their life is to go out & bat & bowl for whatever team they are playing”, ESPNcricinfo quoted Harrison as saying.
“I think that’s a bad place for us to be. We have to be understanding about what it is to be a responsible employer, to be able to get the best back from players. That’s by treating them like adults & taking & communicating openly about how we best mitigate the impacts of this ongoing pandemic”, he added.