A resurgent pandemic with new strains, several positive cases within the teams – including a few inside their bubbles, and the variables raised by the logistics: sites distributed throughout the India and the need for air travel On the eve of IPL 2021, the air of excitement has been tempered by health concerns

Importantly, there are several points of difference between IPL 2020 and this one When teams gathered in the UAE last August, the virus was in a known amount, the first wave was ebbing globally and in any case the UAE was not a hotspot of infection Six months later, India is in the throes of a brutal wave – last week saw its two highest numbers of new daily cases surpassing 100,000 per day – and this wave is highly likely to peak next month

Host cities
There were only three venues at IPL 2020: Dubai, Abu Dhabi and Sharjah On the day the tournament started, the UAE had 674 new cases; he crossed 1000 per week in the tournament and stayed at that level throughout (1096 new cases on the day of the final)

In contrast, the six sites in this IPL – Mumbai, Delhi, Bengaluru, Chennai, Kolkata and Ahmedabad – are currently hotspots Mumbai itself reported over 10,000 new cases on April 6; Delhi had over 5,000 and Bengaluru over 4,200 The total number of new cases in India over the past two days is 200,000 The three cities currently have, or soon will have, a nighttime curfew to try to curb the spread of the disease. virus, although IPL is exempt from these restrictions

Probably the biggest area of ​​concern for several franchises In the UAE, the 8 teams were based between Dubai and Abu Dhabi and traveled all three locations by road using their own transportation. In no case would they come into contact with someone outside the bubble

This year, however, teams will be traveling to different cities – and all of this travel will be by air Although the journey is on charter flights and uses private airports where possible, including entry points. and exit separate, franchises remain concerned The team will still have to undergo security checks at airports before boarding and after landing, which could involve coming into contact with a person outside the bubble

The concerns are underscored by the belief that former Indian counter guard Kiran More, who is part of the Mumbai Indian organization, may have been exposed to the virus at an airport before being recently tested positive Others had entered the squad bubble in Mumbai in March, before the whole squad flew to Chennai, where they begin their title defense. That a positive case was found in a well-prepared franchise like Mumbai, which created its own bubble as early as February, has put other franchises on high alert

Training and management of Covid-19
Roughly a few weeks before IPL 2020, each member of every franchise in the UAE responded to a virtual call to attend an educational workshop on Covid-19 and the guidelines put in place in a biosecurity environment, which was new. for almost everyone in the IPL This session was moderated by BCCI medical experts including Dr Abhijit Salvi, Chief Medical Officer and Anti-Doping Expert, as well as Nitin Patel, Indian Men’s Team Physiotherapist

The public not only heard the dos and don’ts, but also heard what the coronavirus is and how it could be transmitted, and therefore, why it was important to play by the rules in the biosecurity bubble

It is understood that no such session has yet been organized by the IPL This despite the obvious fears shared by the players and coaches of all the teams who some say are worried about the outbreak infection rate outside the bubble across India

Another difference from the last IPL is the lack of two key digital apps that made it possible to not only monitor the health of the person in the bubble, but also track their movements. As soon as a person checked into the IPL bubble in the UAE, they had to download a Covid monitoring app to a digital device A thermometer and oximeter in some of the team’s hotels had been provided to collect the individual’s health parameters, primarily intended to monitor symptoms of Covid-19 This self-report was mandatory and had to be submitted daily Repeated failure to do so would result in a heavy fine for the individual Such an exercise in checks and balances, the deductibles pointed out, was beneficial because if someone showed symptoms , it was quickly detected and the potential spread was slowed down

Motion tracking
In the United Arab Emirates, each member of the IPL bubble was required to wear a GPS tracking device around their neck as a pendant This device tracked the movements of the person in the bubble and triggered a beep if there was a breach the individual had crossed into an area he / she was not allowed to enter. This was done by creating a geofence in the bubble with predefined boundaries Each individual had a separate key fob, with built-in boundaries specified based on the occupation of the individual

It is understood that franchises have not received such a tracking device so far this IPL

Bubble integrity managers
It may not have introduced digital trackers yet, but the IPL first appointed human trackers in the form of a bubble integrity manager. Each franchise will be overseen by up to four Integrity Officers, whose only job is to report any breaches in the bubble by all team members. However, the purpose of these managers has now come under the scanner, as it is understood that one of them was filmed leaving his room while in quarantine at one of the hotels in the ‘team

Quarantine protocols
The IPL has defined quarantine rules both before entering the bubble and once inside the bio-secure environment Quarantine rules range from the duration of a difficult week indoors from the team hotel to the removal of mandatory tests before starting to train In the case of any positive or asymptomatic case, the isolation period varies between one week and 10 days outside the team bubble.The protocols apply not only to the teams, but also to the management of the franchise as well as to the team. ” owners and family members

However, the franchises are not convinced by the protocols, which they believe they are obligated to adhere to despite their arbitrariness.The inconsistency of the protocols is highlighted by the case of drummer Devdutt Padikkal of the Royal Challengers Bangalore, who was recently tested positive It is not known when exactly Padikkal tested positive, but the franchise said he underwent 10-day home isolation.

On Wednesday, Padikkal traveled by road from his home in Bengaluru to Chennai, where his team is based, and even attended training Rival franchises have questioned the logic that allows Padikkal to join the Royal Challengers training session without having to undergo the mandatory weeklong quarantine and testing process They also want to know if the Royal Challengers have given the IPL a written pledge that they will take responsibility for the home quarantine for Padikkal. Likewise, franchises asked why the IPL does not allow management or senior franchise owners, provided they pass the required tests.

The IPL created different layers in the stadium bubble, with no one allowed to enter the demarcated area for players and match officials This includes gardeners and officials from the state’s local associations.The teams that trained in Mumbai and Chennai, where the first round of the IPL Championship phase takes place, have confirmed that no foreigners are was present during training sessions That’s not to say they’re confidentIt was only recently that some of the field staff at Wankhede Stadium, which will host 10 matches in the next two weeks, tested positive, forcing the Cricket Association from Mumbai to rush and find replacements from other sites in the city

It is understood that the governing bodies that manage the Chennai and Delhi sites have vaccinated their gardeners, who are allowed to return home after their day’s work, thus triggering the element of risk State associations say everyone at the site must be tested every few days and those people are not in the locker rooms

Franchises aren’t so sure, as Mumbai didn’t practice once at MA Chidambaram Stadium before playing the tournament opener against the Royal Challengers on Friday

IPL 2021

News from around the world – CA – The vulnerable IPL 2021 bubble

Source: https://www.espncricinfo.com/story/ipl-2021-the-vulnerable-ipl-2021-bubble-1258278