West Indies cleared to leave biosecure facility in New Zealand following COVID breach

The West Indies cricket team have been cleared to leave their biosecure facility in Christchurch on Friday after their third round of coronavirus tests were negative.

The squad, who were banned by New Zealand’s Ministry of Health from training after they breached biosecurity rules, travel to Queenstown on Friday for two warm-up games ahead of the first Twenty20 international on November 27.

West Indies coach Phil Simmons had earlier apologised for his players breaching biosecurity protocols that led to their exemption to conduct training sessions being withdrawn.

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The team had been allowed to train in small groups while undergoing the mandatory 14-day isolation, but the Ministry revoked those privileges after they discovered players had shared food and socialised together.

“I have to apologise to the New Zealand public and the government who have allowed us to come here,” said Simmons.

“It’s embarrassing from our point of view.”

The Windies lost a total of four days training because of the breaches and Simmons says they might be a little slow to get their conditioning and match fitness back.

“We were just getting to the levels that we would normally start at, but coming from no cricket, we had to start slower.”

West Indies’ first outing on November 20 will be against a New Zealand ‘A’ side containing three local batsmen in contention for the Test series starting on December 3.

New Zealand Cricket (NZC) added that all of the New Zealand and West Indies players who arrived in Auckland following the end of the Indian Premier League in the United Arab Emirates, had passed initial health screening checks.

They are to spend the next two weeks in isolation in Christchurch.

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