Pakistani spinner Kashif Bhatti cleared by ECB after testing negative for coronavirus

The England Cricket Board on Thursday cleared Pakistan left-arm spinner Kashif Bhatti, after he tested negative for the coronavirus.


Bhatti, who is currently in England for the upcoming Test series, tested positive for coronavirus upon arrival in UK and was under self-isolation.

The ECB spokesman said that the Pakistani player has been given permission to integrate with the squad after completing his isolation period.

The ECB said that after the initial positive test scare, Bhatti has tested negative for COVID-19 twice now.

According to the sports website ESPN Cricinfo, an ECB spokesperson said that there was confusion over the initial positive test in the UK as it was probably “the remnants of a previous Covid-19 infection”.

The English board spokesperson added that the player was isolated as a safety-first approach.

Earlier, the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) had sought an update from the ECB in this regard and said that Bhatti’s case fell under the jurisdiction of the English cricket board.

Bhatti departed for the series after two negative COVID-19 tests, and as per the PCB, tested negative again when he underwent another coronavirus test for the airline.

“Arrangements for a biosecure environment are the responsibility of the ECB,” the PCB said.

Meanwhile, the PCB also notified that Harris Rauf, who previously tested positive for coronavirus, is now recovering and his recent COVID-19 test also came back negative. The PCB said that if he tests negative for the virus again, the right-arm quickie will be eligible to join the rest of the squad in England.

The board further said that Rauf is currently in a local hotel in Lahore under the supervision of the PCB medical panel.

Earlier on Wednesday, Haider Ali, Imran Khan Sr. and Bhatti, along with a masseur Malang Ali, had departed for England after testing negative for COVID-19 in back-to-back tests.

Moreover, Rauf along with Shoaib Malik, who has been granted special leave to be with his family in UAE, will be the last two squad members left to join the squad in England.


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