Eighth Covid case hits Pakistan cricketers in New Zealand


An eighth member of Pakistan’s cricket squad has tested positive for Covid-19 as the team undergoes quarantine in Christchurch, New Zealand health authorities said Wednesday.

The health department said there was one new confirmed case among the squad and a further two members were being investigated, adding to the seven who previously tested positive over the past week.

The department said the team would not be allowed to train together until doctors were confident it would not lead to more coronavirus cases.

Director-general of health Ashley Bloomfield issued the team with a “final warning” last week for flouting social distancing protocols at their hotel.

No further breaches have been reported since.

Two of the original six cases last week were subsequently found to be historical, meaning they were not infectious, while the other four were active. A seventh member of the squad tested positive on Saturday.

The 53-member tour party, led by skipper Babar Azam, arrived in Christchurch on November 24 for two weeks of quarantine which is mandatory for all overseas arrivals in New Zealand.

All tested negative before leaving Lahore for the five-match tour, which is scheduled to begin with a Twenty20 international in Auckland on December 18.

New Zealand has largely eradicated community transmission of coronavirus recording just 1,704 cases and 25 deaths in a population of five million.