SL vs WI: Mickey Arthur, Grant Flower isolated after fielding coach tests COVID-19 positive


Dark clouds loom over the upcoming two-Test series between West Indies and Sri Lanka as Sri Lanka fielding coach Shane McDermott tested positive for COVID-19 on Thursday, November 18. With the opening game scheduled to start on November 21 at Galle, McDermott testing positive might put fears in both camps. Meanwhile, the fielding coach is now self-isolating, away from the team hotel.

For the unversed, McDermott was the only one to return with a positive result from a mandatory round of testing that saw all players and staff from Sri Lankan tested. However, it has been reported that McDermott was in close contact with head coach Mickey Arthur, batting coach Grant Flower and physio Brett Harrop. The trio has also undergone isolation as a result.

No direct contacts among players: Sri Lanka Cricket’s Medical Committee Professor

Although the coaching staff had been training with the players in Galle lately, Sri Lanka Cricket’s Medical Committee Prof. Arjuna De Silva claimed that none of the players are being considered as close contacts.

“There has been no direct contacts when it comes to the players’ Anti-body tests will be done on the close contacts tomorrow, while another round of testing will be conducted prior to the start of the first Test,” De Silva was quoted as saying by ESPNcricinfo.

“All of Sri Lanka’s players and coaching staff are double vaccinated, and as such, there is little chance of the start of the first Test being impacted,” he added.

Notably, this is not the first occasion of COVID-19 entering the Sri Lankan cricket team camp. While Arthur and three players tested positive ahead of their tour of the West Indies earlier this year, video analyst and Flower contracted the virus before the home series against India in July.

Meanwhile, the upcoming series would witness West Indies and Sri Lanka kick-starting their campaign in the 2021-23 edition of the World Test Championship. Both sides haven’t been performing well in the longest format lately. While the West Indies side might look a tad stronger on the paper, the Lankan Lions have the home advantage.