In the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, cricket is being played inside a bio-secure environment with everybody associated with the series and tournament undergoing several checks for the virus.
Players and support staff are only shuffling between their team hotels and the cricket stadiums for outdoor practice sessions and matches. Nobody is allowed to break the bio-bubble and travel around due to the Coronavirus threat.
No wonder, it has started to take a call on some cricketers, with South Africa’s Faf du Plessis becoming the latest to speak on the difficulties of staying inside a bio-secure bubble.
“We understand that this is a very tough season and a tough challenge for a lot of people out there, but if it’s back-to-back-to back bubble life, things would become a big challenge,” Du Plessis, who is currently with the national side on the tour of Pakistan, said during a virtual news conference on Saturday (January 23).
Du Plessis is one of those Proteas cricketers, who have stayed inside the bubble in the last few months. He featured in the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2020 in UAE and home series against Sri Lanka.
At present, he is in Pakistan to play two Tests, starting Tuesday (January 26) in Karachi.
“The main priority is to play cricket, to be out there doing what we love instead of being at home … so I think that still remains the most important thing. But I think there would definitely come a point where players would struggle with this (bubble)," he said.
“If you look at a calendar of the last eight months, you’re looking at about four or five months in a bubble, which is a lot. For some of us (being) without family, it can get challenging. Right now, I’m still in a good place. I’m still feeling really motivated and driven, but I can only speak for myself.
“I don’t think it’s possible to continue from bubble to bubble to bubble, I’ve seen and heard a lot of players talk about it. I don’t think it’s sustainable,” he further remarked.
The South African team practiced at the National Stadium in Karachi for the first time on Saturday. Earlier, the visitors had been training at a stadium close to the team hotel for the last four days.
“For now, (I'm) enjoying the four walls of my room and then the pitch outside where we can get to do what we love,” Du Plessis said.
(Inputs from Associated Press)