Home / World News / Ashes 2021-22: Member of media tests positive to COVID-19, sends Adelaide Test into further chaos

Ashes 2021-22: Member of media tests positive to COVID-19, sends Adelaide Test into further chaos

Cricket Australia is in the midst of another COVID-19 scare after a broadcast crew member at Adelaide Oval for the second Ashes Test tested positive to the virus.

Just days after Australian captain Pat Cummins was ruled out of the Test after being deemed a close contact, officials have another issue to deal with.

It’s believed the person who tested positive is a member of the BBC radio crew.

The BBC shares resources with the ABC with both outlets forced to sideline their commentators.

Glenn McGrath and Isa Guha are also missing from television broadcasts because they also work for the BBC.

The positive case is also believed to have interviewed Dawid Malan on Saturday, but a mask was worn and social distancing adhered to so the English batsman has been free to continue playing.

“We have been advised that a member of a broadcast crew has returned a positive COVID result as part of their scheduled testing,” Adelaide Oval said in a tweet.

“SA Health are aware and we have begun to trace and notify this person’s close contacts.”

Other members of the media have since been sent for COVID-19 tests but have worn masks all week, including when interviewing players.

Officials were confident on Sunday that the positive case would not have any impact on the players or match.

It comes after Mitchell Starc revealed on Saturday night that only an old- fashioned “p***-take” prevented more Australian bowlers being ruled of the Test.

Starc said he and Nathan Lyon didn’t sit with Cummins at the fateful Wednesday night dinner in Adelaide for one reason.

“It was almost a bit of a p***-take because Pat didn’t reply to our message,“ Starc said.

“We thought we would sit away from him and sit outside.

“So it has been a lucky one.”

Starc and Lyon dined outside while Cummins was inside the Little Hunter steakhouse in central Adelaide.

Another diner near Cummins was notified he had tested positive to COVID-19.

Due to Cummins’ proximity inside the restaurant, the skipper was deemed by South Australian Health as a close contact of the confirmed case.

That Thursday morning ruling meant Cummins was withdrawn from playing in Adelaide and forced into seven days isolation.

Unlike Cummins, Starc and Lyon were ultimately cleared to play because they were seated outside at the restaurant.

Cummins and Cricket Australia struck a deal with SA Health on Friday to allow the skipper to return home to Sydney.

Cummins drove himself to Adelaide airport on Saturday and caught a single charter flight to Sydney.

Under a health system quirk, he won’t have to continue isolating in Sydney as NSW Health is yet to list the Adelaide steakhouse as a venue of COVID concern.

Restrictions will become slightly harsher for players at the Tests in Melbourne and Sydney, ruling out indoor dining as well as activities like hair cuts and mixing with fans.

Cricket Australia chief executive Nick Hockley has stressed the need to be “extra vigilant” with the rise in cases and emergence of the Omicron variant.

“That’s where we need to make sure there’s social distancing, so we ask everyone to be respectful in the public,” Hockley told SEN.

“That’s the real shame because what we have seen is players wanting to interact with fans.

“But we’ve now got very clear protocols. As it comes to those on the field of play we need to make sure that people are operating in a really biosecure way.”

ABC Perth’s bureau has has taken over the coverage for now with Clint Wheeldon, Ben Cameron, Mitchell Johnson and Nicky Shaw commentating remotely.

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