New Delhi | Jagran Sports Desk: In yet another blow to the Indian cricket team in the United Kingdom (UK), the squad's throwdown specialist Dayanand Garani has tested positive for the novel COVID-19 infection. According to reports, three members of the squad, including wicket-keeper batsman Wriddhiman Saha, have been isolated "as a close contact as per the protocols".

The development comes hours after it was confirmed that Rishabh Pant has tested positive for the Delta Variant of COVID-19. Though Pant, who remains in isolation, is asymptomatic at this point, he and Saha will have to miss the team's practice match scheduled to start on July 20.

"Yes, Dayananda has tested positive, but luckily he wasn't around too many members of the team. Saha unfortunately will have to isolate as he was a close contact. Hopefully, he returns negative tests too as Rishabh is also currently down and a subsequent test will give more clarity," news agency ANI quoted sources as saying.

The Indian squad was given a 20-day break after the final of the inaugural World Test Championship (WTC) final, which the team lost last month, following which several members of the side were seen attending the Euro Cup and Wimbledon Championships.

However, a report by news agency PTI has claimed that BCCI secretary Jay Shah had warned the players over the surging COVID-19 cases in the UK, asking them to take all necessary precautions. The players, as per the PTI report, were also asked to avoid going to the Wimbledon and Euro Championships.

Meanwhile, the Indian cricket team will play five Tests against England from August 4, marking the beginning of the second cycle of the World Test Championship. Ahead of the Test series, Virat Kohli's side is scheduled to play a practice game against a combined county side from July 20.

India's squad for England series: Rohit Sharma, Shubman Gill, Mayank Agarwal, Cheteshwar Pujara, Virat Kohli (captain), Ajinkya Rahane (vice-captain), Hanuma Vihari, Rishabh Pant (wicket-keeper), Ravichandran Ashwin, Ravindra Jadeja, Axar Patel, Washington Sundar, Jasprit Bumrah, Ishant Sharma, Mohammed Shami, Mohammed Siraj, Shardul Thakur, Umesh Yadav, KL Rahul, Wriddhiman Saha (wicket-keeper).

Standby players: Abhimanyu Easwaran, Prasidh Krishna, Avesh Khan and Arzan Nagwaswalla

Posted By: Aalok Sensharma