The Indian cricket team’s request for arranging practice matches before the start of limited-overs matches against Sri Lanka have reportedly been denied citing COVID-19 protocols. An second-string India squad led by Shikhar Dhawan will be in Sri Lanka in July for to play three T20Is and as many ODIs.
Instead, the touring party will have to make-do with intra-squad games to prepare for the limited-overs matches.
“The Indians wanted to play some warm-up games against the A team or a team that could be arranged, but the COVID-19 protocols made that a little difficult and that is when a request went to BCCI to play intra-squad games. So, the Indian team will now play one T20 game and two one-day games to prepare for the limited-overs series," news agency ANI quoted sources as saying.
Indian Test squad, which is in UK, also had to play an intra-squad game to prepare for the ICC World Test Championship starting Friday against world’s top-ranked New Zealand.
Meanwhile, the squad for the Sri Lanka tour has assembled in Mumbai and will now undergo a mandatory quarantine lasting two weeks.
“Team India"s limited-overs squad for the Sri Lanka series has assembled in Mumbai. Good to see some new and happy faces in the squad," tweeted BCCI on Tuesday.
As per reports, same Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) will be followed by the Lanka-bound squad as that of of the Test squad currently in UK.
“All the rules will be same like we followed in England. The outstation players came by charter flight and some flew business class of commercial airline," a BCCI source privy to development told PTI on conditions of anonymity.
“They will do seven days of room quarantine and then can meet in common areas inside the bio-bubble. The players will do gym sessions in staggered manner," the source added.