Hambantota [Sri Lanka], January 6 (ANI): In a big boost, the English cricket team can now start preparing for the two-Test series against Sri Lanka as there has been no new coronavirus cases in the latest round of tests conducted on the squad.
According to a ESPNcricinfo report, the visiting squad will hold their first training session of the tour in Hambantota on Wednesday afternoon. All-rounder Moeen Ali has now returned to stay in a separate accommodation, after an aborted plan to relocate him to Galle following his positive COVID-19 test.
There were doubts over the future of the tour after Ali tested positive for Covid-19 upon arrival in Sri Lanka. Chris Woakes, who travelled from Birmingham to Heathrow airport in the same car as Moeen, was also put in quarantine as he was considered a close contact and there were concerns that the virus may have spread onto others.
News that the rest of the squad -- including Woakes -- tested negative after a new round of testing on Tuesday will be a significant relief both to the England camp and Sri Lankan authorities as they were nervous over the prevalence of the virus in the UK as per the report.
The England Test squad led by skipper Joe Root arrived in Sri Lanka on Sunday ahead of the upcoming two-match Test series, beginning January 14.
All members of England's touring party had tested negative for coronavirus before departure but the ECB on Monday confirmed that Moeen tested positive for COVID-19 after PCR tests were done post-arrival.
England Test Squad: Joe Root(c), Moeen Ali, James Anderson, Jonathan Bairstow, Dom Bess, Stuart Broad, Jos Buttler, Zak Crawley, Sam Curran, Ben Foakes, Dan Lawrence, Jack Leach, Dom Sibley, Olly Stone, Chris Woakes, Mark Wood.
Reserves: James Bracey, Mason Crane, Saqib Mahmood, Craig Overton, Matthew Parkinson, Ollie Robinson, Amar Virdi. (ANI)