Sri Lankan Cricket Board have declined India’s request to play practice matches before the commencement of the series, citing Covid-19 concerns. The Asian giants scheduled to play three ODIs and as many T20Is on the Sri Lanka Tour of India from 13th July to 25th July in Colombo. The team will be comprised of second-string players captained by Shikhar Dhawan and coached by Rahul Dravid.
The Indian team reportedly wanted to play practice matches with the Sri Lanka A team but the request was denied due to Covid-19 concerns. Instead, India will now play three intrasquad games – two T20s and one 50-over match.
“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,” said a source as quoted by ANI.
Squad for the Sri Lanka Tour of India
Shikhar Dhawan (C), Prithvi Shaw, Devdutt Padikkal, Ruturaj Gaikwad, Suryakumar Yadav, Manish Pandey, Hardik Pandya, Nitish Rana, Ishan Kishan (Wk), Sanju Samson (Wk), Yuzvendra Chahal, Rahul Chahar, K Gowtham, Krunal Pandya, Kuldeep Yadav, Varun Chakravarthy, Bhuvneshwar Kumar (VC), Deepak Chahar, Navdeep Saini, Chetan Sakariya
Net Bowlers: Ishan Porel, Sandeep Warrier, Arshdeep Singh, Sai Kishore, and Simarjeet Singh
The members of the Indian squad are currently in Mumbai to complete their mandatory 14-day (7-days hard and 7-days soft) quarantine. They will again undergo a three-day hard quarantine in Colombo until 4th July.
According to reports, the Lanka-bound squad would follow the same Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) as the Test squad now in the United Kingdom.
“All the rules will be the same like we followed in England. The outstation players came by charter flight and some flew business class of a commercial airline. 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 a staggered manner,” said a BCCI source to PTI.