International cricket saw the first instance of the Covid substitution protocol when it was used on the fourth day of the second Test between Bangladesh and South Africa at Gqeberhatoday.
South Africa opener Sarel Erwee and fast-bowling allrounder Wiaan Mulder were withdrawn from the Test after contracting Covid-19. The pair were tested on fourth day morning of the Test today, and returned positive results. They were replaced by Khaya Zondo, who is on his Test debut, and Glenton Stuurman, for whom it was his second Test.
However, none of them had to come into action as Keshav Maharaj and Simon Harmer, the two spinners of South Africa wrapped up Bangladesh's second innings for 80 inside one hour of the morning session and helped the side win the game by 332 runs. Maharaj claimed 7-40 while Harmer finished with 3-34.
The Covid replacement earlier was used in New Zealand's first-class tournament Plunket Shield and England's County Championship. It is just the second instance of two substitutes for a team in the same match in international cricket after Bangladesh had two concussion subs against India in the 2019 pink-ball Test.
It wasn't all unexpected. The series is being played in a managed environment rather than a bio-bubble, which means that players are not limited to their hotel rooms and are allowed to go out -- with the advice being that they should stick to open-air restaurants and the outdoors-- as well as mingle with other people.
"This is an unfortunate situation, but not unexpected after the decision was made to have this tour under the Managed Event Environment (MEE) protocol, rather than the strict Bio-safe Environment (BSE) Protocol as was previously the case," Dr Shuaib Manjra, CSA's chief medical officer said told ESPNcricinfo.
"This is in line with the country's policy in revoking the Disaster Management Act with reference to the pandemic, as well the huge mental strain that a bubble environment induces."
This is the third instance of the series being affected by Covid-19. Bangladesh's coach Russell Domingo was able to attend the Test after contracting Covid-19 last week while South Africa's bowling coach Charl Langeveldt and security officer Zunaid Wadee are also not at the match after testing positive on Friday.