Problems galore for depleted Australia as Agar tests positive for Covid
Lahore : Australian left-arm spinner Ashton Agar has tested positive for Covid-19, hours before the start of the three-match One-day International (ODI) series against Pakistan at the Gaddafi Stadium here on Tuesday.The 28-year-old Agar, who had been sidelined during the ICC T20 World Cup in the UAE, was expected to partner fellow spinner Adam Zampa in the opening ODI. The Covid-positive test means that Agar becomes the second Australia cricketer to test positive in 24 hours, and be ruled out of the entire ODI series.Australian wicketkeeper-batter Josh Inglis had tested positive on Monday along with physiotherapist Brendan Wilson. Cricket Australia (CA), however, said that all other players and support staff had returned negative tests.”JUST IN: Ashton Agar has tested positive to COVID-19 and will now miss the #PAKvAUS ODI series,” tweeted Cricket Australia on Tuesday.
Australia will field one of the most depleted white-ball sides in a long time. The tourists’ first white-ball match on Pakistan soil since 1998 is shorn of some of the biggest names, including Test captain Pat Cummins, Mitchell Starc, Josh Hazlewood and top-order batters Steve Smith and David Warner.The side will also be missing pace bowler Jhye Richardson, who was not considered for the entire tour keeping his long-term utility in mind, while Kane Richardson suffered a hamstring injury at training in Melbourne a day before the team’s departure. Limited-overs specialist Glenn Maxwell too is missing after he got married recently.To add to their woes, Mitchell Marsh with 63 ODIs to his name and Australia’s second-most experienced player on the tour behind skipper Finch (132 ODIs) — has been ruled out of the first ODI and possibly the entire series due to a hip flexor injury sustained at training on Sunday.