Protective measures implemented by the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) to facilitate the travelling West Indies (WI) team during their historic three-Test tour are being monitored by the Ministry of Health as a potential model for this year’s Caribbean Premier League (CPL) Twenty20 tournament.
This was revealed by Minister of Health Dr. Terrence Deyalsingh during a virtual media conference held on Saturday.
CPL organisers have confirmed their intention to stage the August 18 to September 10 tourney entirely in TT, though still subject to Government approval. Matches will be played behind closed doors.
Since the arrival of the WI team in England on Tuesday, Deyalsingh has been paying particular attention to the preventative systems put in place to protect the visiting Caribbean squad.
“They have built a sort of a (protective) bubble for the WI team. They were transported by private charter flights, landed in Manchester, put on the tarmac, sent to their hotel and then quarantined. It’s a model that the CPL would have to look at and we at the Ministry of Health can provide any technical advice they would need. I am paying very close attention to what’s happening in that tour.
This Test series bowls off on July 8 and is the first major International Cricket Council sanctioned meet since the global pandemic. The 39-member touring party tested negative for covid19 before departing Antigua.
Upon arrival, the players were quarantined and tested again. They will live, train and play at Emirates Old Trafford, before heading to the Ageas Bowl in Southampton for the first Test. The second and third matches will take place at Old Trafford.
Both venues have hotels on-site to facilitate the visiting team. English cricket officials have certified both venues “bio-secure.”
Deyalsingh added, “We will be looking closely at the West Indies Tour of England to see what they do that we could look at as a model...They did not have to pass through a terminal. Then they were taken straight to a hotel and did not interact with the public. What you are seeing there is a process of no mixing.”
Although still unconfirmed, if the Government does accept the opportunity to host this year’s CPL, strict protective measures will be implemented by both the tournament’s organisers and TT’s health ministry. Once all goes well with the touring regional team, the protective steps taken by the ECB would be implemented, and even enhanced, to ensure a safe and secure environment for this year’s "biggest party in sport."