Two Twenty20 Internationals and three One-Day Internationals were part of Ireland’s tour of the United States. Both teams were tied 1-1 in the T20I series. However, due to concerns about Covid-19, the ODI series has been called off. Due to the recent development of Covid-related concerns, USA Cricket and Cricket Ireland have collectively opted to cancel the series. Two members of the Irish support staff, as well as several players’ spouses, tested positive, according to an official statement. As a result, two Irish players are considered close contacts.
● Covid hitting cricket
“While all players in both current playing squads have returned negative COVID results overnight,” an official statement read. “However, two members of the Irish support staff, as well as several partners of players, have tested positive, resulting in two Irish players being deemed as close contacts.”
According to the statement, both boards agreed to the cancellation due to the risks and concerns regarding the situation.
The Irish touring party is due to leave Florida for Kingston, Jamaica, on December 31 for their series against the West Indies; however, the two members of the support staff who have tested positive must complete their isolation in Florida before their onward travel arrangements are confirmed.
The players and support staff from the United States will return to their homes as soon as feasible and exit the COVID Managed Event Environment.
“We are all upset by the cancellation of the ODI series announced today (Wednesday). Over COVID-related concerns that have emerged today, USA Cricket and Cricket Ireland have unanimously opted to cancel the one-day international leg of the USA v Ireland Men’s International Series,” according to a statement from USA Cricket.
“While all players in the current playing teams have returned negative COVID findings overnight, two members of the Irish support staff, as well as various partners of players, have tested positive, resulting in two of the Irish players being considered as ‘near contacts,” USA Cricket reported.
The United States Cricket Board set up over $350,000 for this competition, which is not part of the International Cricket Council’s Future Tours Program. The cash-strapped board used some of its funding for 2022 as a strategic endeavour to make the series a reality.
According to USA Cricket insiders, the series was considered as the ideal foil for having a ‘full member’ nation in the United States, while Ireland saw it as an excellent opportunity to acclimate themselves with some cricket before disembarking on Caribbean shores. It has been learned that the costs have risen to almost USD 500,000 over time.
As they prepare to depart for Jamaica, Cricket Ireland’s High-Performance Director stated that the health and safety of its players and staff would be the top priority.
“We’d want to express our gratitude to USA Cricket for hosting us and collaborating with Cricket Ireland and the ICC on the series. It’s a real sadness for the fans, staff, volunteers, and everyone else who worked so hard to put this series together to see it come to an end like this, but we see a lot of potential in cricket in the United States and will undoubtedly return in the future,” Richard Holdsworth said.