Vodafone Test Series v India
Five Indian players isolating as CA, BCCI launch investigation
Potential breach of COVID-19 protocols being investigated after footage emerged of Indian players purportedly eating at indoor venue in Melbourne
AAP & Cricket Network
2 January 2021, 09:50 PM AEST
Warning: the social media post embedded below contains obscene language.
Five Indian players have been placed in isolation after video emerged on social media of the group appearing to eat at an indoor venue on Friday in Melbourne.
The players – Rohit Sharma, Rishabh Pant, Shubman Gill, Prithvi Shaw and Navdeep Saini – have been separated from the Indian and Australian squads but will still train "in accordance with the strict protocols that have been put in place to ensure the ongoing safety of all members of the Indian and Australian squads," said a Cricket Australia statement on Saturday night.
Bc mere saamne waale table par gill pant sharma saini fuckkkkkk pic.twitter.com/yQUvdu3shF— Navaldeep Singh (@NavalGeekSingh) January 1, 2021
"The BCCI and CA are investigating the matter and seeking to determine whether the outing constitutes a breach of biosecurity protocols.
"In the interim, on the advice of the Australian and Indian medical teams, the aforementioned players have been placed in isolation as a precaution. This will include separating the group of players from the broader Indian and Australian squads when traveling and at the training venue."
The video of the five players sitting at a table in a Melbourne restaurant was posted on the Twitter account of Navaldeep Singh.
Singh suggested on Friday he paid the bill for the table then hugged Pant, although on Saturday he claimed there was no hug and players kept their distance.
The four-Test series between Australia and India is being played amid a backdrop of biosecurity rules, which will get stricter when the squads travel to Sydney on Monday.
Players and staff are permitted to leave the hotel but must dine outdoors during the Melbourne leg of the tour.
The protocols have helped Cricket Australia, which requires exemptions from Queensland's government for players to travel from Sydney to Brisbane for the fourth Test, navigate the country's latest COVID-19 outbreak.
CA came down hard on Brisbane Heat after Chris Lynn and Dan Lawrence's biosecurity breaches earlier this season, fining the club $50,000 ($20,000 suspended) and each player $10,000 ($4,000 suspended).
England paceman Jofra Archer's biosecurity breach in 2020, when he stopped at his house while the squad travelled between hotels, resulted in a one-Test ban.
It will be up to the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) to investigate the recent incident and decide what sanctions, if any, are levelled.
Vodafone Test Series v India 2020-21
Australia Test squad: Tim Paine (c), Sean Abbott, Pat Cummins, Cameron Green, Marcus Harris, Josh Hazlewood, Travis Head, Moises Henriques, Marnus Labuschagne, Nathan Lyon, Michael Neser, James Pattinson, Will Pucovski, Steve Smith, Mitchell Starc, Mitchell Swepson, Matthew Wade, David Warner
India Test squad: Virat Kohli (c) (first Test only), Ajinkya Rahane (vice-captain), Rohit Sharma, Mayank Agarwal, Prithvi Shaw, KL Rahul, Cheteshwar Pujara, Hanuma Vihari, Shubman Gill, Wriddhiman Saha (wk), Rishabh Pant (wk), Jasprit Bumrah, Mohammed Shami, Umesh Yadav, Navdeep Saini, Kuldeep Yadav, Ravindra Jadeja, Ravichandran Ashwin, Mohammed Siraj
First Test: Australia won by eight wickets
Second Test: India won by eight wickets
Third Test: January 7-11, SCG, 10.30am AEDT
Fourth Test: January 15-19, Gabba, 11am AEDT