India and Pakistan cricketers approved entry for England tours with both countries on Covid ‘red list’

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<p>The touring teams from India and Pakistan will be able to quarantine at the Ageas Bowl</p> (Getty Images)

The touring teams from India and Pakistan will be able to quarantine at the Ageas Bowl

(Getty Images)

The Government has approved the entry of cricketers from India and Pakistan – both on the Covid ‘red list’ for travel – to the country to face England this summer.

India’s men (for the World Test Championship Final and a five-Test series), India’s women (for a multi-format series) and Pakistan’s men (for limited overs internationals) are all due in the country this summer, despite being on the Government’s red list, which only allows entry to British nationals.

The teams will be able to quarantine at the Ageas Bowl near Southampton, rather than in a Government facility, when arriving for their tours.

The conditions of quarantine will be more stringent for those arriving from the red-listed countries than for New Zealand’s men’s team, who arrived in the country this weekend and are also based at the Ageas Bowl.

New Zealand is on the green list, while Sri Lanka – who are also touring for white-ball action – features on the amber list at present.

The agreed conditions only cover players and support staff, not their families. Negotiations between the relevant organisations around getting families of the India men’s team – who are here for around four months – into the country are likely to continue.

These conditions also only cover international action, not the Hundred. The quarantine conditions for players arriving from red-listed countries, such as Pakistan and South Africa, for that tournament are not yet clear.

The situation around overseas players in the Hundred has already been significantly complicated by the naming of Australia’s squads for their tour of the Caribbean in July. Seven of the nine Australians in the men’s Hundred have been called up and a number of West Indies players, such as Andre Russell and Keiron Pollard, are likely to be selected to face them, endangering participation in the Hundred.

Jofra Archer could have surgery on his lingering elbow injury this weekAFP via Getty Images
Jofra Archer could have surgery on his lingering elbow injury this weekAFP via Getty Images

England are due to name their squad for the New Zealand series, which begins on June 2, on Tuesday afternoon. They will be without Jofra Archer, as well as those players who have recently left quarantine having returned from the Indian Premier League (IPL).

Archer could have surgery as soon as this week as he sees a consultant to map the best road to recovery for the right elbow that has caused such persistent issues in recent years.

He made his first-class return for Sussex last week, picking up three wickets in the early part of the game against Kent, before being unable to bowl towards the match’s end.

Surgery could rule Archer out for much of this summer but, with the injury preventing him from bowling at top speeds pain-free, it is likely to be seen as a worthwhile investment in his future, with a T20 World Cup and Ashes looming this winter.

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