Australia’s cricket board has requested its federal government to relax the mandatory 14-day quarantine period for persons entering the country so that India players Rohit Sharma and Ishant Sharma can take part in the forthcoming four-match Test series Down Under.
“We have put a request in with our government. We want the best possible players playing, but we are in the government’s hands now," a top Cricket Australia (CA) official told Sportstar .
According to the Australian government’s health advisory, “The Australian Health Protection Principal Committee (AHPPC) recognises some other travellers should be exempt from quarantine requirements as long as they take steps to mitigate the risk. These travellers must apply for a quarantine exemption in line with state and territory requirements.”
Rohit and Ishant have been undergoing rehabilitation at the National Cricket Academy (NCA) in Bengaluru. While Ishant returned to India midway through the 2020 Indian Premier League (IPL) season after tearing an abdominal muscle, Rohit stayed back despite a hamstring tear, leading Mumbai Indians to a fifth title.
If CA's request is approved, that could also open the doors for skipper Virat Kohli to return to Australia before the final Test. Kohli will miss three out of the four Tests as he is due to return home for the birth of his first child.
The 32-member India contingent is currently training in Sydney while in quarantine, most of the players having flown directly from the bio-bubble in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) where the IPL was conducted. Kohli’s men will take on Australia at the Sydney Cricket Ground in the first One-Day International (ODI) on Friday.
In addition to the Tests, the tour of Australia comprises three Twenty20 Internationals and three ODIs. The first pink-ball Test between the two countries is scheduled to begin in Adelaide from December 17.
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