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Shield Shield game to go on despite Victoria all-rounder testing Covid positive (ld)

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Sydney, Nov 19 (IANS) The Sheffield Shield match between New South Wales (NSW) and Victoria, which was scheduled to be played on Friday, will now start on Saturday at the Sydney Cricket Ground (SCG) after Victoria all-rounder Will Sutherland’s Covid-19 test results came out to be positive.

Sutherland, who is fully vaccinated, was displaying mild symptoms, Cricket Victoria was quoted as saying by cricket.com.au. He must be quarantined for 10 days at the team hotel before returning to Melbourne.

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“While it is impossible to remove all risk from this situation, Will was relatively non-infectious during his periods of interaction with members of the Victorian team,” Cricket Australia’s (CA) chief medical officer, Dr. John Orchard, said in a statement.

Currently, Sutherland is the only Victoria squad member known to have the Covid-19 virus, with ten members returning negative results and a further six remaining yet to be known with no close contacts identified. “As such, and due to their compliance with biosecurity protocols, all members of the Victorian squad have been deemed casual contacts. They will be able to take the field at the SCG tomorrow subject to receiving negative results,” added Dr. Orchard.

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Earlier, the decision to postpone the match came half an hour before the toss with the entire Victoria squad, including support staff, placed in self-isolation as the further analysis was being conducted on Sutherland’s routine test. Cricket Australia had said that during routine testing Sutherland “returned a test result which requires further analysis”.

“No members of Australia’s Ashes squad were due to play in the match, with those this week picked for national duty already in Queensland ahead of the first Test in Brisbane. The results of further testing will determine whether the match can begin tomorrow (Saturday), or if it will be postponed to a later date.”

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“The Marsh Sheffield Shield match between New South Wales and Victoria at the Sydney Cricket Ground, scheduled to begin today, has been postponed due to a possible Covid-19 case in the Victorian side. The Victorian team is currently self-isolating while this analysis and investigation take place. Cricket Australia will provide further updates in due course.”

This is the second time during the season that a Shield match has been postponed on the morning of the match. Previously, the Queensland-Tasmania match in September was cancelled after cases of community transmission were reported in Brisbane.

–IANS

nr/bsk

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