The world cricket governing body – International Cricket Council (ICC), has made available a 24-hour Psychologist to speak to the players during the course of the T20 World Cup about their mental health issues.
With cricketers living in the bio-bubble in the pandemic era, the mental health and fatigue concerns have increased. Nevertheless, the governing council will try to keep the players mentally fit for the T20 World Cup, which starts on October 17 in Oman and the UAE.
Senior official Alex Marshall, the head of ICC’s Integrity Unit and in charge of overseeing a foolproof bio-secure environment, talked to the media on Thursday about the ICC’s planning of the mega-event.
“Some people, we have to accept that their mental health will be affected in controlled environment. The ICC will make available 24 hours a day, a psychologist to speak to any individual who seeks help,” Marshall said during a virtual media interaction.
“We are also providing lot of resources for people to address the issue and within their own team and squads they bring their own medical staff, have own systems in place to take care of players. But from ICC’s perspective they have got lots of resources, very good resources and used in other sports, proven to work well, as professional support 24×7 a day for somebody who seeks it.”
The ICC has allowed immediate families to stay and travel with the players.
“Close families can be important factor in reducing stress and making it an enjoyable environment for players. We have allowed small number of close families, family members have to go through phase of isolation and make sure they are negative, they have to stay in managed environment,” he informed.
We don’t think there will be any bubble breaches: ICC’s Integrity Unit Head
Alex Marshall further added that the ICC is expecting full cooperation from the players regarding maintaining the bio-bubble sanctity and following all the rules laid down. He stated that if any member of a contingent breaches the bubble, the management of that team will deal with it and not the ICC.
“If people stick to rules and maintain discipline, we shouldn’t have any problem. We would expect management of any team, if they find any person not adhering to rules, to take that very seriously. We don’t think there will be any breaches,” he said.
“If there is a breach that is a matter of the management of that particular team to treat that seriously. That’s as far as I can go at the moment,” he added.
All the teams will have to undergo six days of quarantine, after which they enter the managed environment.
Marshall updated the media on the procedure should a player or staff members test positive and about the rules about quarantine of the close contact of the positive tested person.
“We also expect a few positive cases to emerge and there will be 10 days of isolation for the particular individual. Anyone who is deemed close contact to the person and has been around the COVID-positive individual for more than 15 minutes without mask will have to isolate for six days,” he added.
Oman will host Papua New Guinea in Round 1 for the tournament’s first match on 17th October at the Al Amerat Cricket Ground.