Bangladesh will start their practice for the upcoming two-match Test series against New Zealand today after all members returned with corona negative results, said a Bangladesh Cricket Board official on Monday.
Doubts were raised regarding the two-match Test series due to the extended quarantine imposed by the New Zealand Health Ministry that prompted the BCB to announce that they would have to rethink if the quarantine is further increased.
“We have completed the last corona test yesterday (December 19) and today the result came out and all of us returned negative,” Team Director Khaled Mahmud said.
“We can come out from here (Managed Isolation and Quarantine Centre) tomorrow and start our practice from the morning at the Lincoln University Ground where we will also get the gym facilities and after completing the practice we will move to our team hotel and do all the normal activities,” he said.
It was learnt that Herath will not be accompanying the team during the first few days of their practice sessions as he is yet to get the clearance to join them by the health department of New Zealand.
Mahmud insisted that he (Herath) will be available as soon as he gets the clearance after obtaining a negative Covid-19 result.
Bangladesh took part in an outdoor practice session for the first time on December 16 after completing their required quarantine but were later asked to stop their practice and go back to MIQ (Managed Isolation and Quarantine) as the New Zealand government didn’t want to take any chance as a passenger on a plane that carried Bangladesh team was found to be infected by the Omicron variant.
Apart from the intra-squad practice game, the tourists were scheduled to play a two-day practice match against New Zealand A from December 28 ahead of the two-match Test series.
The opening Test is scheduled to be played at Bay Oval in Tauranga starting on January 1 while the second Test will be played from January 9 at Hagley Oval, Christchurch.