With uncertainty surrounding the continual participation of Australian cricketers in the ongoing IPL 2021, reports have emerged that New Zealand stars have no such plans to quite and return home.
On Tuesday, Australia suspended flights from India leaving the plans of Australian contingent including Steve Smith and David Warner to fly back in turmoil. They were hoping arrangements will be made for their return before the border closure is announced.
New Zealand Cricket Players Association chief executive Heath Mills has revealed that players are ‘anxious’ of the coronavirus situation in India but they are feel safe in IPL bio-bubbles.
“There’s no doubt they’re certainly anxious about what is happening in India and what they’re witnessing. But they feel well looked-after by their IPL franchises and very safe in their bubbles,” Mills was quoted as saying by stuff.co.nz.
“There’s four teams in a hotel and the hotel is locked down. The challenge is when they transfer from city to city, then they need to put on the PPE gear and that’s when they’re probably most at risk,” he added.
The likes of Kane Williamson, Trent Boult, Stephen Fleming Kyle Jamieson, Mitchell Santner, Lockie Ferguson are among several New cricketers and support staff from New Zealand currently in India for IPL 2021.
None, Mills said, has expressed a desire to leave India so far. “Whilst they’re anxious, they’re ok. No one has indicated yet that they want to go home,” he said.
New Zealand are scheduled to tour England for a Test series right after the conclusion of IPL where they will also face India in the final of ICC World Test Championship.
“We’ve got players going to England for that test series; they can’t very well come home, do the two weeks isolation and then go to England, so they’re going to have to be there until the round-robin finishes, or the final series,” Mills explained.
“The players are in the safest place in India, in the team bubbles, which is the most important thing from my perspective,” he added.
Australians Andrew Tye, Adam Zampa and Kane Richardson have already announced they are leaving IPL while India offspinner Ravichandran Ashwin has also taken a ‘break’ to be with his family as they fight coronavirus.