Roots squad starts training next week for series openerThe positive test of Allrounder rules him out for the first test
After all members of the touring party – with the exception of Moeen Ali – returned negative results from the latest round of Covid 19 tests, England’s test squad has started training for next week’s series opener in Sri Lanka. Since landing in Hambantota on Sunday, Joe Roots players were isolated in their hotel rooms, with the emergence of Moeen’s positive outcome from PCR tests taken on arrival at the airport delaying the first session of the visitors. Sri Lanka is adamant that Covid will not postpone the test series with EnglandRead moreBut the latest results suggest that Moeen is the only case, and while he must continue a 10-day isolation period – and Chris Woakes, considered a near touch, must complete seven days amid negative testing – the squad is now ready to go outside and begin preparations. A team spokesman said, “All the PCR tests from yesterday [Tuesday] are negative, except for Moeen Ali, and we can start controlled training this afternoon. We will do a third Covid test tomorrow [Thursday].”All the PCRR spokesman said, On Tuesday, the all-rounder had moved to separate accommodation in Galle, but has since returned to another wing of the team’s Hambantota hotel after Nick Peirce, the medical director of the ECB, determined that on-site construction work rendered this new location unacceptable and a second alternative did not comply with all biological safety protocols. The absence of Moeen leaves Dom Bess and Jack Leach as the two spin bowling choices for the two-match series in the main Test squad, while Matt Pakrison, Mason Crane and Amar Virdi are also on tour in the 23-man squad as reserves.