Bio-bubble needs to be maintained in order for Indian Premier League (IPL) to happen, said Royal Challengers Bangalore (RCB) skipper Virat Kohli while reiterating as to how teams cannot afford to show any leniency in going about things in the UAE.
The IPL 2020 will be played from September 19-November 10 in the UAE across three venues --Dubai, Abu Dhabi, and Sharjah.
The initial tournament would be played without fans, and all the teams would be staying in a bio-secure bubble as a precautionary measure against the coronavirus.
"Whatever I said on the Zoom call should not be a matter of pressure for anyone because of the magnitude of the COVID situation. We are all here to eventually play cricket and take care of this tournament and surroundings. The bio-bubble needs to be respected in order for the tournament to happen," Kohli said in a video posted on the official YouTube channel of RCB.
"We are here because we have the opportunity to play. We are not here to roam around and have fun. We are not living in such a time where we can hang around Dubai, we have to understand the privilege we have in front of us, everyone should accept it and they should not have unrealistic desires," he added.
Last week, during a Zoom call with his team-mates and support staff, Kohli had said as to how no player can afford to breach the bio-bubble of the franchise.
"If someone was to end up in such a situation or position, for me that's letting the whole team down. Because it might happen at a stage of a tournament where we can't afford to lose that player. If he does so, and we get harmed by it, then the whole team, the whole system, and culture loses. I just wanted to talk about this so that everyone understands the repercussions that may take place if someone violates the rules," Kohli had said in the team meeting.
When asked as to whether such a warning will create pressure on the youngsters within the team, Kohli said: "Look, I understand that you might not have had the balanced understanding of things, initially you might not have had clarity about so many things, even I did not have clarity initially."
"It should not be a thing of pressure, if someone guided me as to what is the right thing to do when I was new to the team, I would have loved it. I would have had a clear vision in front of me," he added.
On Saturday, the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) confirmed that 13 personnel including two players tested positive for COVID-19.
However, the board did not specify as to which team has how many confirmed cases. The identity of the players and staff was also not revealed.
"13 personnel have tested positive of which 2 are players. All the affected personnel as well as their close contacts are asymptomatic and have been isolated from other team members. They are being monitored by the IPL Medical Team," the BCCI had said in an official release.
All players and team personnel are required to undergo a six-day quarantine period after landing in the UAE and everyone needs to be tested for COVID-19 thrice.
Once, they all test negative for COVID-19, the players can start training in the UAE with their team-mates.
The final match of the 2020 edition is scheduled to be played on a weekday, i.e. Tuesday, for the first time in the history of the T20 tournament.
This time, both the afternoon and evening matches will be played half-an-hour earlier than usual.