The Indian Men’s and Women’s Cricket teams embark on their respective tours to England most probably together on the 2nd of June. While the men’s team will first clash with New Zealand in the final of the World Test Championship starting in Southampton on the 18th of June before taking on hosts England in a marquee five-Test series, the women’s contingent start their campaign with a one-off Test against England in Bristol mid June. The BCCI has made special arrangements to get the players to Mumbai for a two-week quarantine starting Wednesday, 19th May by organizing charter flights in Chennai, Hyderabad and Delhi.
The various players and support staff have started to assemble in Mumbai with the likes of R Ashwin, Mithali Raj, Mayank Agarwal, Mohammed Siraj and Washington Sundar having made it to their destination via the charter flight.
The Indian cricket board is still bargaining with the ECB on formalizing the terms and conditions of the quarantine in England. They reportedly want a few days of hard quarantine to be followed by a soft quarantine in which players will be allowed to train and practice. The BCCI is understood to have demanded at least 10 days of practice before the commencement of the international fixtures.
Players from small towns and cities may travel in commercial flights in the business class for which the BCCI is expected to reimburse them. All the players have to test Covid-19 negative in the RT-PCR before they join the bubble in Mumbai. The BCCI has tied up with a central agency while some players in the smaller cities are making their own arrangements.
The issue of a hard lockdown was a controversial subject when India toured Australia in 2020-2021 and the BCCI would want to ensure the maximum possible comfort for its players.
The bubble in Mumbai is expected to be tight especially after what transpired in the 2021 edition of the IPL where some players and support staff tested positive breaching the bio bubble which led the BCCI to postpone the coveted league with the uncertainty of when and where to host the remainder of the tournament.