8 Groundsmen At The Wankhede Tested Positive For COVID-19 Just A Week Before The IPL Begins

8 Groundsmen At The Wankhede Tested Positive For COVID-19 Just A Week Before The IPL Begins

Wankhede, IPL 2021
Wankhede Stadium, Mumbai. Image source- aajtak.in

In what is a serious jolt to the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) and IPL 2021 is that 8 of the 19 groundsmen at the Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai have returned a positive test for the coronavirus on Friday.

The IPL 2021 commences on 9th April with the defending champions Mumbai Indians taking on Royal Challengers Bangalore in Chennai – no team will play at its home ground this season – while the Wankhede will host the second game of the season on April 10th between 3-time champions Chennai Super Kings and last season’s runner-ups, Delhi Capitals.

IPL
IPL Trophy. Photo Credit: IPL/BCCI.
The Wankhede Stadium will host 10 matches this season from April 10th to 25th. Apart from CSK and DC, Rajasthan Royals, Punjab Kings, Kolkata Knight Riders, and Royal Challengers Bangalore will also play in Mumbai. The Narendra Modi Stadium in Ahmedabad will host the playoffs, including the final on May 30th.

There will be no threat to IPL matches at the Wankhede: MCA official

Amidst the groundstaff testing positive, the Mumbai Cricket Association (MCA) is now planning to keep the staff at the ground itself till the matches are over as most of them travel by local transport from their home to the ground. The MCA has also assured that the IPL games will be conducted smoothly, and they are looking into the matter with utmost seriousness.

IPL Wankhede Stadium (Twitter)
IPL Wankhede Stadium (Twitter)

“We will make arrangement for the ground staff at the stadium itself with immediate effect. We have many rooms at the ground where they can be housed. There will be no threat to IPL matches at the Wankhede. We will be ready by the time the tournament starts,” an MCA official was quoted as saying by Hindustan Times.

It is reported that the MCA was also in talks with Wankhede curator, Ramesh Mhamunkar, about adding more staff to get the ground ready. MCA has the ground staff at their facility at BKC and Kandivali at their disposal and can be called over to help anytime to prepare the ground for the IPL 2021.

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