In a bad news for Australian cricketers playing in IPL 2021, Cricket Australia interim CEO Nick Hockley on Monday (May 3) said that the CA has no immediate plans for arranging charter flights to bring back Australian players after the conclusion of IPL 2021.
Cricket Australia on arranging Charter Flights
Chris Lynn, who is with the Mumbai Indians, raised the prospect of a charter flight first, but that notion came in for criticism from some quarters given the number of Australians trying to return from India.
“There’s no suggestion at the moment of any charter flight. We’re working closely and talking closely with the ACA (Australian Cricketers’ Association), with the players and with the BCCI (Board of Control for Cricket in India) to make sure everyone’s okay and the people have got full information,” Hockley told SEN Radio, as reported by cricket.com.au.
“We’ve been in touch with the players there and they are generally in good spirits. The work the BCCI has done around the (bio-secure) bubble means they are feeling safe and secure, and those we’ve talked to are generally planning to complete their playing commitments. The BCCI have come out and said they understand and want to support the players in making sure they get home safely at the end,” he added.
Talking about IPL 2021, Hockley said: “The tournament doesn’t finish until the 30th of May, so for the moment it’s monitor the situation and as we get closer to the end of the tournament we’ll need to see where the situation is at.”
It may be recalled that earlier this year, the CA had decided to postpone Australia’s Test tour of South Africa due to Covid-19. Hockley said: “The tour of South Africa is a different set of circumstances. That is representing the national team and we at Cricket Australia have a direct duty of care around that tour.
“The players have made their own decision to go and compete in the IPL on their own time, so technically they are there under their own auspices. But of course, we’re very concerned for their safety, we’re very concerned for their wellbeing and we are concerned to make sure at the end of the tournament that everyone gets home safely. That’s the reason why we’re in such regular contact with the players, with the ACA and the BCCI,” he added.
Australian Players may sentence to Jail
Australian citizens or residents, who have been in India for 14 days from the start of their travel will be banned from travelling back home starting Monday and disobeying could lead to a five-year jail term or hefty fines.
Australia’s Health Minister Greg Hunt in a statement said, “The government does not make these decisions lightly. However, it is critical the integrity of the Australian public health and quarantine systems is protected and the number of COVID-19 cases in quarantine facilities is reduced to a manageable level.”
“Failure to comply with an emergency determination under the Biosecurity Act, 2015 may incur a civil penalty of 300 penalty units, five years’ imprisonment or both. The CMO will consider the epidemiology in India and likely impacts on Australia’s quarantine capacity, and provide a further expert assessment of the public health risk to Australia to inform a proportionate response,” the statement further said.