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'Pakistan squad members contracting Covid-19 in New Zealand is unfathomable'

The former Test batsman stated that defeating New Zealand on their home turf was a tough assignment

PHOTO: Reuters

Former national selector Shoaib Mohammad, while talking to an Express News correspondent on Saturday, claimed that squad members contracting the novel coronavirus in New Zealand was an unfathomable development.

The former Test batsman stated that defeating New Zealand on their home turf was a tough assignment while also urging the team and management to follow the Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) to the fullest extent.

“Defeating New Zealand on their home ground is a tough ask. Due to the current circumstances and the spread of the Covid-19, the tour will be a test of the players’ nerves. The world has changed because of the coronavirus. Even cricket is being played in a different way. Squad members testing positive for the coronavirus in New Zealand is unfathomable and is not a good omen,” said Shoaib.

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“If SOPs are not followed correctly, it creates many hardships. New Zealand officials sending out a warning to the Pakistan side is also a dangerous development,” he added.

The 59-year-old believed that the Pakistan side should have been careful about the SOPs from the start while expressing hope that the tour would continue without any future problems.

“The cricketers and management should have been careful about the SOPs since the start. I hope the tour goes on without any problems. The team needs to be given support and confidence. The players were in high spirits after participating in the recently concluded PSL 5 playoffs,” he said.

“Pakistan and New Zealand matches are always played very competitively. But defeating New Zealand on its home ground is a very tough obstacle. This tour is a great opportunity for the Pakistan side. Our players will have to play with unity,” he concluded.