IPL: Cricket Australia urged to arrange charter flights to bring players home amid India Covid-19 crisis

Australia batsman Chris Lynn plays for IPL side Mumbai Indians

Batsman Chris Lynn has asked the Australian cricket board to arrange a charter plane to bring players home at the end of the Indian Premier League (IPL) as India battles a surge in Covid-19 infections.

Three Australian cricketers have already cut short their IPL season to head home but a number of the country’s top players remain, including Steve Smith, David Warner and Pat Cummins.

Cricket Australia (CA) contacted Australia’s IPL players on Monday inquiring about their health and travel plans, and Lynn said he had responded by requesting the governing body to help arrange a flight.

“I texted back that as Cricket Australia make 10 per cent of every IPL contract was there a chance we could spend that money this year on a charter flight once the tournament is over?” Lynn, who plays for IPL side Mumbai Indians, told News Corp media.

“I know there are people worse off than us. But we are going from a really tight bubble and are getting vaccinated next week so hopefully the government will let us get home on a private charter.

“We are not asking for shortcuts and we signed up knowing the risks. But it would be great to get home as soon as the event is over.”

CA were unable to provide immediate comment.

India recorded 352,991 new cases of Covid-19 on Monday, placing further strain on an already overwhelmed health system.

Australia is set to consider a proposal on Tuesday to suspend all flights from India to prevent more virulent coronavirus variants entering the country.

The government said last week it would cut the number of its citizens able to return from India and other red-zone countries.

The IPL is being played under biosecurity protocols, and Lynn said he had no immediate plans to leave.

Reuters

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