Multiple members of the Chennai Super Kings contingent have tested positive for Covid-19, resulting in the franchise extending its mandatory quarantine period in Dubai ahead of the Indian Premier League season, PTI reported on Friday.

There is no official confirmation yet from the Board of Control for Cricket in India or the CSK franchise.

A current India limited-overs cricketer is among those to have tested positive, the PTI report said adding that a source confirmed all Covid-19 positive results came during day 1, 3 and 6 of testing after the contingent’s landing in Dubai. It is part of the Standard Operating Procedure in place.

At least 10 members of the CSK contingent have tested positive according to ESPNCricinfo, but the report on the website stated that the results were from the third test that were conducted on day five.

The 13th edition of IPL, which has been moved outside India due to the pandemic, is due to begin on September 19.

“Yes, a right-arm medium fast bowler, who has recently played for India, along with a few staff members have tested positive for Covid-19,” a senior IPL official told PTI. “As far as we know, one of the senior-most officials of the CSK management and his wife, and at least two members of their social media team are also Covid-19 positive.”

Earlier, ESPNCricinfo reported that CSK had “extended their quarantine period and have postponed the start of their IPL training camp to September 1”. The CSK contingent landed in Dubai on August 21 and were expected to start training on Friday. The report added that the other camps are monitoring the developments in the CSK contingent.

According to the BCCI’s SOP, all those who test positive are mandated to go through an additional seven-day quarantine. They can enter the bio-secure bubble only after returning negative in tests to be conducted after the extended isolation.

While CSK are set to be the last team to start training after entering the bio-bubble, the team had a camp in Chennai before departing for UAE. The camp was arranged at the request of captain MS Dhoni, according to franchise CEO KS Viswanathan.

“When we announced that the tournament [IPL] is going to happen, I had reservations about conducting the camp here because of the bio-bubble which we will have to observe,” Viswanathan had said.

“In fact, I even sent a message to him whether it will be worthwhile having a camp of five days before we leave for Dubai. But captain was crystal clear in his thoughts,” he added in a video posted by CSK on their YouTube channel, which also features Deepak Chahar and Ambati Rayudu talking about the importance of getting together.


According to another report in the Times of India, the members tested positive after landing in the UAE which is understandable as their travel to UAE would not have been possible otherwise.

According to PTI, the Indian governing body is bewildered by the decision to have a camp in Chennai before departing for UAE.

“CSK practised three days in Chennai out of the five days. Was there any tangible gain achieved from that camp?” a BCCI official told PTI.

“If you see, they all had tested negative for Covid-19 during the two RT-PCR tests conducted in Chennai ahead of their departure. Had they been positive, they wouldn’t have been able to board the flight in the first place,” a league source told PTI.

Those who have tested negative will likely be allowed to enter the bio-bubble. However, the IPL source believes that the likelihood of the team’s camp starting on September 1 is slim.

“I don’t think they can start the camp from September 1. It will take at least till September 5 before they can even think of resuming the camp,” the official said.

For the time being, there is no imminent threat to the league, shifted out of India this year due to the pandemic. According to the original schedule for this season, the inaugural game was set to be between 2019 finallists Chennai Super Kings and Mumbai Indians.

While the revised schedule is yet to be announced by IPL, it’s not clear if CSK would be ready for the September 19 league opener.

(With PTI inputs)