In the last few days, the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) has been beginning to cause serious damage to areas in, and around, the Indian subcontinent. Pakistan too has had to face its fears regarding the coronavirus and as a result, the country's premier T20 tournament, the PSL (Pakistan Super League), was called off and postponed on the day of its semi-finals. Reports then began to suggest that superstar English batsman Alex Hales had tested positive for COVID-19 and his infection was the main reason behind the PSL's sudden cancellation.
In the press release that was released officially by the Pakistan Cricket Board, it explained how one of the overseas players involved in PSL 2020 had been showing symptoms of COVID-19. This development had urged the PCB to take quick steps in eliminating further risk of spreading the virus by calling off the remaining three matches. Soon enough, further reports began surfacing of the unnamed player actually being English batsman Alex Hales. More reports even went as far as declaring that Hales had, indeed, tested positive for COVID-19. The PCB finally ended speculation when they made this tweet.
PCB reiterates NO player or support staff has tested positive for COVID-19 to date.— PakistanSuperLeague (@thePSLt20) March 17, 2020
We urge all stakeholders to show responsibility and wait for official confirmations.
Factually incorrect messages will further compound what is already a complex global health and safety matter.
Karachi Kings batsman Alex Hales was one of the many foreign players who left for their homes after the PCB allowed them to do so under the Coronavirus threat. Many other reports had claimed that Hales had developed COVID-19 symptoms and it was his health that triggered the spontaneous postponement of the PSL. The English batsmen then took to his social media and came out with a statement of his own.
An update on my situation, stay safe everyone pic.twitter.com/8mDPOBGmI8— Alex Hales (@AlexHales1) March 17, 2020
The PCB was aiming to complete PSL 2020 amid rising fears for the coronavirus in Asia. However, in a sudden move, the two semi-finals and the resulting final were called off in an attempt to curb the transmission of the virus. The PSL 2020 will now be completed at a time which is safe for all the participants. The IPL has also been postponed by the BCCI who can now hold the tournament after April 15 if the situation eases up.