Aussies in IPL transported to Maldives, Hussey stays back

Sydney, May 6 (IANS): Amid a raging debate over Australia's decision to ban travel from India, many players, coaches, match officials and commentators who were involved in the now postponed 2021 Indian Premier League (IPL) have been transported from India to Maldives.

The Cricket Australia (CA) and Australian Cricketers' Association (ACA) said in a joint statement on Thursday.

The Australian government had faced criticism from every quarter calling the ban "racist".

Chennai Super Kings (CSK) batting coach and former Australian batsman Mike Hussey remains in India having tested positive. "Mike is experiencing mild symptoms and is in the care of his IPL franchise, the Chennai Super Kings. CA and the ACA will work closely with the BCCI to ensure Mike's safe return to Australia when it is safe to do so," said the CA and ACA.

The Australians will remain in the Maldives until the conclusion of the travel ban pertaining to flights from India to Australia.

India is crippled by a raging second wave of the Covid-19 pandemic which led to Australia banning flights from the country until May 15. It also resulted in the 2021 IPL being indefinitely postponed after multiple Covid-19 cases came up within the tournament bio-bubble, thus stranding the Australians who were involved in the tournament.

"As previously stated, CA and the ACA are not seeking an exemption from the Australian Government," said the CA and ACA.

Australian Prime Minister fended off accusations of racism and having blood on his hands Tuesday, as he retreated from a threat to jail Australians trying to escape Covid-wracked India.

Morrison's government moved to ban travellers from India from entering Australia starting Monday, threatening rule-breakers -- including Australian citizens -- with prison time.

The decision was denounced by rights groups and some of Morrison's most prominent allies who said it "stinks of racism".



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