From Sachin Tendulkar to Yusuf Pathan...Is Road Safety World Series becoming a COVID-19 cluster?

While being the relishing tournament for the Indian cricket fans on one hand, the Road Safety World series has on the other hand been unveiling the grounds of COVID-19 spread as some of the legendary cricketers who had participated in the tournament have tested positive for the COVID-19 viral infection, putting the fans under deep shock and raising more concerns that the numbers of players testing positive could go up. 

The tournament had brought the legends and veteran cricketers back to the battle on the greenfield and the fans could have never imagined that the series would end with the possible cluster of the COVID-19 viral infection. On Saturday, Master Blaster Sachin Tendulkar said that he had contracted the viral infection and his announcement had shocked the fans when the country has been bracing up for the second wave of the pandemic. 

In a statement that he released on Saturday on social media, Sachin said, "I have been testing myself and taking all the recommended precautions to ensure COVID is kept at bay. However, I have tested positive today following mild symptoms. All others at home have tested negative. I have quarantined myself at home and am following all the necessary protocols as advised by my doctors". 

"I want to thank all the healthcare professionals who are supporting me and many others across the country. Take care all of you", the 47-year-old retired cricketer added. Ever since he had made the announcement that he had tested positive for the pandemic, several cricketers and thousands of his fans have been extending their wishes to the master blaster to get a speedy recovery. 

Recently, Sachin had participated in the Road Safety World Series, which was a T20 tournament featuring retired cricketers. He was also the brand ambassador of the tournament and he was part of the winning Indian Legends team. He finished the tournament as the third-highest scorer with 233 runs. India won the tournament by defeating Sri Lanka Legends in the final that was held at Raipur's Naya Raipur International Cricket Stadium. 

The fans soon came to know that Sachin isn't the only one in the Indian Team who tested positive for COVID-19 as, after the master blaster, veteran cricketer Yusuf Pathan had on Saturday said that he also had tested positive for COVID-19 and said that he had quarantined himself at his residence, where he is taking all the necessary precaution. He also had requested the people who had come in close contact with him to get tested. 

Taking to Twitter, Yusuf Pathan said, "I've tested positive for COVID-19 today with mild symptoms. Post the confirmation, I have quarantined myself at home and taking all the necessary precautions and medication required. I would request those who came in contact with me to get themselves tested at the earliest." After Yusuf Pathan said he had tested positive for the virus, his younger brother and veteran cricketer Irfan Pathan said, "Get well soon Lala. I’m sure you will be fit and fine soon."

After Yusuf Pathan, yet another cricketer had contracted the viral infection. On Sunday, cricketer Subramaniam Badrinath revealed that he also had tested positive for the novel coronavirus, which further shocked the fans as he also had participated in the tournament. Taking to Twitter, Badrinath said, "I have been taking all necessary precautions and have been getting tested regularly". 

He further said, "However, I have tested positive for COVID-19 and have some mild symptoms. I will follow all protocols and will be isolating myself at home and will take needful action as per advise from my physician. TC & Stay safe". The back-to-back developments had deeply saddened the fans and they have been extending their wishes to the three veteran cricketers for getting speedy recovery. 

The tournament, which was held in India, had drawn huge crowds amid the spread of the pandemic and it was asserted that the matches were played by putting the COVID-19 protocols in place. However, these three cricketers, who had participated in the series, had tested positive for novel coronavirus and though the list has only three cricketers, the development had risen more concerns from the fans and other players that more players could test positive for the virus, leaving the series to become a COVID-19 cluster. 

The Road Safety World Series is a T20 cricket competition featuring retired cricketers and was organized by the Road Safety Cell of Maharashtra to raise awareness about road safety. The 2020-21 edition of the series featured retired players from India, England, Sri Lanka, South Africa, West Indies, Australia, and Bangladesh. Sachin Tendulkar was the ambassador of the series while Sunil Gavaskar served as the commissioner. India had hosted the current edition and won the tournament by defeating Sri Lanka Legends in the final that was held at Raipur's Naya Raipur International Cricket Stadium.