Photo Credit: Cricket Ireland
USA Cricket and Cricket Ireland have jointly agreed to the cancellation of the one-day international leg of the Dafabet USA v Ireland Men’s International Series over COVID-related concerns that have emerged today.
While all players in both current playing squads have returned negative COVID results overnight, two members of the Irish support staff have tested positive, as well as several partners of players, resulting in two of the Irish players being deemed as ‘close contacts’.
The ODI series had earlier been interrupted by COVID cases detected amongst members of the USA squad and umpires for the series, and as such the risks and concerns about further spread have meant that both Boards have regrettably agreed to cancel the remaining two scheduled matches.
The Irish touring party are scheduled to depart Florida for Kingston, Jamaica on 31 December for their series against West Indies, however, the two members of the support staff who have tested positive will be required to complete their isolation in Florida before their onward travel arrangements are finalised.
The USA players and support staff will travel back to their respective homes and leave the COVID Managed Event Environment as soon as possible.
In addition to the joint statement, Richard Holdsworth – Cricket Ireland’s High Performance Director – said:
“The decision has been a difficult one to make, but clearly the right outcome from a player and staff health and safety perspective. While there are no positive Covid results amongst the Irish players, we have had two support staff test positive and a number of travelling partners and family members also testing positive. This has meant two players within our playing ranks being deemed ‘close contacts’ and have been isolating while they are further tested and monitored.
“From a broader perspective, consideration had to be given to the current series as well as the second leg of our tour. We need to be mindful of travel requirements for entering Jamaica and meeting Cricket West Indies Covid protocols.
“Over the coming days we will prioritise the health and safety of our players and staff, and work with local officials in ensuring our people are well looked after – whether preparing to travel onward to Jamaica, or having to remain in Florida a little longer in isolation.
“We would like to thank USA Cricket for hosting us, and working so closely with Cricket Ireland and the ICC on the series. It is a real pity for the fans, staff, volunteers and all those who have helped put this series on to see it end this way, but we see great potential in cricket in the USA and will certainly return during better times.”.
Photo Credit: LinkedIn profile photo of Richard Holdsworth