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BCB Confident of Hosting New Zealand Despite Lockdown

Despite New Zealand’s closure, the Bangladesh Cricket Board is hopeful of staging a five-match T20I series against them. After a positive case of COVID-19 was confirmed, the New Zealand authorities imposed lockdown measures.

Reported 10 New Cases

After experiencing their first COVID-19 case in six months, the country reported ten new cases. The visitors will play all of their games at the Sher-e-Bangla National Stadium in Dhaka from September 1 to 10.  “The series is very much on,” BCB chief executive Nizamuddin Chowdhury said, “I just spoke with the CEO of NZC and there is no kind of uncertainty regarding the upcoming home series against them.”

Richard Boock, NZC’s public affairs manager, emphasized that the level four COVID-19 notice will not affect travel arrangements. “We still have some matters to work through but we’re confident we’ll be able to arrange for the players to depart as scheduled,. “Regarding COVID-19, our players will be vaccinated and adhering to best-practice health protocols, including mask-wearing, social distancing and operating within bio-secure bubbles. Once in Bangladesh, they will be flying into, and out of Pakistan on charter flights,” he said.

NZC’s Advance Team Arrived in Dhaka

Meanwhile, a team from NZC’s Advance has arrived in Dhaka to check the bio-bubble setup. With the players expected to arrive in Dhaka on August 24, the member is currently under quarantine for three days and will report back to the board after that. Nizamuddin went on to say that while there will be similarities to the Australia series, it won’t be the same because tourists won’t receive the same direct tarmac-to-hotel transport that the Australians did.

.”They will be traveling in a commercial flight so their airport procedure won’t be exactly like Australia’s arrangements. But we will try to minimize public contact on their way to the hotel,” the BCB chief said. “They have requested us to give them the same bio-bubble environment that we ensured for Australia keeping everything in mind, we will do as much as practically possible to put together a complete bio-bubble environment to have a successful series.”

However, New Zealand’s practice match has been canceled. “They were offered [a practice match] but since it means an additional bio-bubble in another venue, they have discouraged it. They also want minimum movement during the series,” he pointed out.

“Our players have been instructed to keep their movements restricted and told to be within the family environment. They have been discouraged from attending public functions. They will enter the bio-bubble when it is ready.”

On August 24, both teams will enter a bio-bubble and must complete a three-day mandated quarantine before beginning their series preparation.

Read More: Afghanistan Prepare For Pakistan Series

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