Indian Premier League (IPL 2021) was played in two phases after the COVID-19 outbreak in the bio-bubbles of multiple franchises. Chennai Super Kings (CSK) batting coach Michael Hussey was among the people to test positive for the virus during first half of the tournament.
The former Australia batter recalled his horrific experience in a column for Fox Sports. Hussey wrote that his situation kept getting worse and the doctors had decided to shift him from Delhi, which had turned into a COVID-19 hotspot, to Chennai.
Hussey had decided to fly to India as he loved his job and was committed towards his IPL team, leaving Perth; which he called one of the safest places in the world.
"I felt uneasy when the time came to leave Perth earlier this year to coach with the Chennai Super Kings at the Indian Premier League.‘Why am I leaving one of the safest places in the world?"
"But I love my job and I had made a commitment to coach at the IPL. So, despite my nervousness, I flew to India and embarked on the mandatory seven-day quarantine which was a prerequisite for entering the IPL bubble," he wrote.
Hussey shared his struggle of suffering from the deadly COVID-19 in isolation. "I was locked in my room immediately. No one could come in, and I obviously couldn’t leave. Food was left outside my door like in quarantine. I was isolated, a bit worried, and feeling progressively worse."
He further added, "My symptoms: I had a bad fever to the point where I was changing my shirt four or five times a night from sweating out. I had a relentless dry, barking cough. And I was really tired. I would try and sit at my desk to do some work, but quickly feel the need for a lie-down. I would wake up from what felt like a quick nap to realize three or so hours had passed."
The 46-year-old was shifted to Chennai for better medical attention as cases in Delhi increased rapidly when the country was hit by the second wave of COVID-19.
"The doctor with the team was concerned. He realized I was probably in the worst place in the world to get Covid at that time. Delhi was recording hundreds of thousands of known new cases a day, there were very few hospital beds and many, many more people lining up outside the hospitals in need of them."
"If things turned bad, the doctor wasn’t sure if I could get the medical assistance I would need. They decided the best thing to do was to fly me back to Chennai, the team’s home base," he wrote.
It wasn't easy for Hussey to deal with the situation but it was comforting for him to know there were people to look after him. "All I could do was trust them. Once we got to the airport, I was wheeled straight onto the plane on a stretcher inside the body bag. The air ambulance flight to Chennai took about three and a half hours. Then it was back into an ambulance and straight to a quarantined hotel," the CSK assistant coach wrote.
"All that said, I was incredibly lucky. There were so many people in worse situations than me. I had an employer that went out of its way to look after me at a time of crisis for the country. As confronting as it was to be sick and stranded, having people on the ground with your best interests at heart was very comforting," he added.
Chennai Super Kings went on to win their fourth IPL title after the tournament resumed in UAE. They defeated Kolkata Knight Riders in the final by 27 runs to lift the trophy.
(With Fox Sports Inputs)