Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB) had informed earlier that cricketers from the national team and the high performance (HP) side will be tested thrice for Covid-19 before touring Sri Lanka. The sample collection ahead of that was supposed to start on September 18. But now, there will four phases of testing instead of three.
BCB has decided to go through an extra testing phase which will see samples collected on tomorrow, September 7. The next three phases will be conducted on September 18, 21 and 24. The final testing will be conducted 72 hours prior to boarding the flight to Sri Lanka. BCB's chief physician Dr Debashish Chowdhury has confirmed it to The Business Standard (TBS).
"We are trying to collect samples from the cricketers from tomorrow. We have some work left in logistics. We have to collect everyone's address as we will collect the samples from their homes. We are trying to start from tomorrow. Or else we will start from the day after tomorrow. But we are hopeful that we will be ready by tonight and will be able to start from tomorrow," informed Dr Debashish.
The added testing is to ensure the cricketers' safety, Dr Debashish added. He said, "We had planned to do the testings in three phases. Then we thought of doing an extra one."
"We will start collecting samples for that from tomorrow. Earlier, we had planned to start the testings from September 18. Overall, we will have four testing phases for the national and HP team. The other three phases will be conducted on September 18, 21 and 24. The last testing phase will be 72 hours prior to the tour," added Dr Debashish.
The national and HP team will be announced soon and then the selected players will go through the second phase on September 18. Then, they will be relocated to a hotel on September 20 before starting team practice on September 21. The cricketers will then board their flight to Sri Lanka on September 27 and the first Test will be at Kandy on October 24.