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Thursday, December 01, 2022

England play down Covid concerns after illness affected build-up of Headingley Test

England’s team management has played down concerns about a possible Covid outbreak within the team for the third Test at Headingley after the team’s batting coach Marcus Trescothick tested positive for the virus on the same day as captain Ben Stokes. were absent with one unspecified. disease.

Trescothick was absent from the first day of training at Headingley before Thursday’s final Test against New Zealand, and was instead isolated at home, where he would be monitored daily. The details of their return to the set-up will be announced in due course.

At the time of writing, the ECB is not conducting blanket tests on the rest of the players and staff unless they are showing symptoms. A spokesman for the organization confirmed that at present all are symptom free.

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It also included Captain Stokes, who was not on deck in Leeds due to illness. However, he did a test on Tuesday morning which came back negative. He will not test again unless his symptoms are specific to COVID-19.

Stokes fell ill back at Cockermouth over the weekend and is yet to feature in the squad at Leeds as a result. He had originally planned to be in situ with the team on Monday, due to be officially called to the field the next morning for an afternoon training session. Stokes is expected to make an appearance on Wednesday and be able to take his place in the XI for Thursday’s start, with England leading New Zealand 2-0 in the final Test.

Trescothick’s positive test is the first of England’s series, in contrast to his opponents who have suffered absences over the past few weeks. Henry Nicholls, Blair Tickner, Kane Williamson, Michael Bracewell and Devon Conway have been dropped along with two members of staff on the tour. The most dramatic was Williamson, who was diagnosed on the eve of the second Test at Trent Bridge, leaving him out of the match and requiring Tom Latham to be deputed as captain.

Williamson, along with Bracewell, returned to training on Tuesday morning, while Conway’s five-day isolation period has ended. Speaking to the media, Trent Boult reaffirmed a clean bill of health across the board: “Everyone is healthy and available to choose from,” he said.

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17.42GMT This story was updated following news of Marcus Trescothick testing positive for COVID

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