USA-Ireland ODIs cancelled due to Covid-19 concerns

Due to COVID-19-related concerns, the ODI series between the United States and Ireland has been canceled. Two members of the Ireland team’s support staff, as well as several players’ partners, tested positive. Two of the Irish players were considered close friends.

Ireland is scheduled to fly from Florida to Kingston, Jamaica on December 31 for a series against the West Indies. The two members of the support staff who tested positive, on the other hand, will remain in Florida to finish their isolation period.

USA Cricket budgeted close to USD 350,000 for this tournament, which is not part of the ICC’s Future Tours Program. The cash-strapped board used some of its 2022 budget as a strategic initiative to make the series a reality. According to USA Cricket insiders, the series was seen as the ideal foil for having a ‘full member’ nation tour the United States, while Ireland saw it as an invaluable opportunity to acclimate themselves to cricket before disembarking on the Caribbean shores. It has been learned that the expenditures grew to be close to USD 500,000 over time.

After going to great lengths to stage the series with Ireland, the decision to call off the entire series 48 hours before the final ODI was scheduled to begin may not sit well with some members of the US cricket community. It’s important to note that none of the Irish players have tested positive, and only a few support staff members and several players’ partners have. The entire USA squad, on the other hand, had shared an indoor dressing room with a squad member who tested positive after the second T20I and was forced to quarantine until the results came back negative.

The USA group rehearsed together for the remaining two ODIs within 48 hours after receiving bad results. It’s hard to understand why the same rules that were used to combat Covid weren’t applied to the latest outbreak within Ireland’s touring party. It would have been more prudent to hold off on making the final ODI decision until after testing the squad on the morning of the match, which was 48 hours after the announcement. But it would be stupid not to consider Ireland’s desire to avoid further jeopardizing their ODI super league series against the West Indies by continuing to play in a series blighted by covid outbreaks.