Ahead of SA series, Ireland player tests Covid-19 positive

Dublin: The Ireland men’s cricket team suffered a Covid-19 setback ahead of their first One-day International against South Africa with their wicketkeeper-batsman Neil Rock testing positive for the virus.

Electing to bowl after winning the toss on Sunday, South Africa had made little headway as Ireland made a strong start to be on 72/1 in 20 overs.

A statement from Cricket Ireland said, “Ireland’s Neil Rock has tested positive for COVID-19, with Stephen Doheny called up as a replacement.

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“Team management was informed of the positive result, and Rock has been isolated from the squad as he awaits a follow-up test at the team hotel. Doheny, meanwhile, will undergo a COVID test this and – given a negative outcome – will join the squad tomorrow (July 12).

Mark Rausa, Head of Sport Science, Physiotherapy and Medical Services for Cricket Ireland, said, “Due to our biosecurity measures and contact tracing, we are satisfied that we do not have any genuine close contact cases and this should therefore have minimal impact on the squad.

“However, out of an abundance of caution due to the proximity of the series start, we will test one player and one staff member who had confirmed they spent a short amount of time with Neil with correct COViD safe precautions in place. We expect them to test negative and re-join the squad tomorrow.”

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