Six positive tests for coronavirus at Premier League clubs as restart is considered

Six positive cases for coronavirus have been detected at three Premier League clubs after players and staff were tested ahead of a return to training on Tuesday. (Reuters/File Photo)
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Updated 20 May 2020

Six positive tests for coronavirus at Premier League clubs as restart is considered

  • 748 players and club staff were tested for COVID-19

LONDON: Six positive cases for coronavirus have been detected at three Premier League clubs after players and staff were tested ahead of a return to training, England’s top flight said Tuesday.
“The Premier League can today confirm that, on Sunday 17 May and Monday 18 May, 748 players and club staff were tested for COVID-19,” the league said in a statement.
“Of these, six have tested positive from three clubs.”
No details were released over which individuals or clubs are affected.
“Players or club staff who have tested positive will now self-isolate for a period of seven days,” added the league’s statement.
Brighton have previously confirmed three positive cases among their squad at different stages of the pandemic, while positive tests for Arsenal manager Mikel Arteta and Chelsea winger Callum Hudson-Odoi played a major role in the decision to suspend matches on March 13.
Premier League clubs began returning to training in small groups on Tuesday after protocols on safety measures were signed off on Monday.
The number of positive cases represents just 0.8 percent of those tested and is consistent with similar widespread testing conducted by other major leagues hoping to complete the season.
Germany’s top two divisions registered 10 positive cases out of 1,724 tests two weeks ago ahead of their return to action last weekend.
Five players from Spain’s top two divisions tested positive last week before La Liga’s return to group training.
Premier League clubs are aiming for a return to action by the middle of next month, but face resistence from players concerns over their welfare.
Watford captain Troy Deeney has said he will not return to training this week due to fears he could pass the virus on to his five-month-old son.
“I can’t get a haircut until mid-July, but I can go and get in a box with 19 people and jump for a header,” said Deeney on the Talk The Talk podcast.
“I don’t know how that works. No one could answer the questions, not because they didn’t want to, but because they don’t know the information.”
Newcastle left-back Danny Rose claimed players were being treated like “guinea pigs or lab rats.”
Rose’s manager Steve Bruce said the majority of his players are in favor of a return to training and praised “meticulous” planning on behalf of the Premier League to make the environment as safe as possible.
However, Bruce has also questioned the limited preparation time players could have between returning to contact training and competitive matches, warning his squad could “fall down like a pack of cards” with injuries.


Murray to the rescue as Nuggets hold of Lakers

Updated 23 September 2020

Murray to the rescue as Nuggets hold of Lakers

  • The 23-year-old Canadian’s three-pointer from 26 feet gave Denver a seven-point advantage at 106-99

ORLANDO: Jamal Murray scored 28 points as the Denver Nuggets held off a ferocious late fightback from the Los Angeles Lakers to roar back into contention in the Western Conference finals series on Tuesday.

Murray nailed two crucial late three-pointers in the closing minutes as Denver held on for a 114-106 victory in game three to reduce the Lakers’ lead to 2-1 in the best-of-seven series.

But the Nuggets — who looked in complete control for long periods of the contest — were given a mighty scare by the Lakers in a thrilling fourth quarter battle.

The Lakers had trailed by 20 points with just over 10 minutes remaining but whittled away the Denver lead to just three points with 3min 53sec left on the clock in Orlando.

But just as it looked as if LeBron James and Anthony Davis were poised to complete a remarkable comeback, Murray regrouped to take the game away from the Lakers.

The 23-year-old Canadian’s three-pointer from 26 feet gave Denver a seven-point advantage at 106-99 and he then provided the assist for Paul Millsap to make it 108-99.

With less than a minute on the clock, Murray struck the dagger blow with a 29-foot three-point jumpshot to make it 111-99 and effectively seal victory.

Denver coach Michael Malone said his team — who had suffered an agonizing buzzer-beater defeat in game two on Sunday — were determined not to go 3-0 down in the series.

The Nuggets have already overturned 3-1 series deficits en route to the Western Conference finals.

“I had no doubt we were going to show up tonight,” Malone said.

“We have won six straight elimination games. Everybody always has us packing our bags and leaving, but we’re not ready to go. They’re a very resilient group and they have proved that time and time again.”

Asked about his late flourish, Murray said he had set out to lead by example.

“That’s my whole energy, my whole approach to the game, not getting down if I miss a couple of shots,” Murray said.

“I’m just trying to be aggressive ... but the most important part is the energy I bring when I’m talking to my team-mates, being a vocal leader, getting up and down and pushing everybody so they tend to follow. I just wanted to see them have a lot of fun today.”

The Lakers, meanwhile, were left reflecting on an uneven display which ultimately left James and Davis with too much to do.

James led the scoring with a triple double comprised of 30 points, 10 rebounds and 11 assists, with six turnovers. Davis had 27 points, with Kentavious Caldwell-Pope (12) and Kyle Kuzma (11) the only other Lakers players to crack double figures.

Murray, who also had 12 assists, was backed with 26 points from Jerami Grant while Nikola Jokic weighed in with 22 points, 10 rebounds and five assists.

“You put yourself in an 18-point hole, it’s tough to climb out of that,” Lakers coach Frank Vogel said.

“I thought Denver played with great energy throughout the game. We didn’t match it early, we matched it late. They’re a great basketball team so credit it to them for the win. They played a really good basketball game.

“We were not as sharp as we could have been on both ends of the floor. We were playing at a high level, but were a little bit off in the first half.

“But I liked the spirit that the guys competed with down the stretch to try and make it a game.”