10 players left off Pakistan’s England tour over virus, says cricket board

In this file photo, Pakistani cricketers wait for the umpire's decision during a Test cricket match between Pakistan and Sri Lanka at the National Cricket Stadium in Karachi on Dec. 22, 2019. Pakistan’s cricket team will leave for its tour of England on Sunday without 10 players who tested positive for COVID-19. (AFP)
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Updated 27 June 2020

10 players left off Pakistan’s England tour over virus, says cricket board

  • The players can rejoin the squad of 18 players if they later test negative, says board chief
  • Pakistan’s squad will have a 14-day isolation period on arrival before continuing their preparations ahead of the first Test

KARACHI: Pakistan’s cricket team will leave for its tour of England on Sunday without 10 players, after they tested positive for coronavirus for a second time, the country’s cricket board said Saturday. 
The board chief executive Wasim Khan said the players can rejoin the squad of 18 players if they later test negative.
After first testing positive this week, follow-up tests were given to Shadab Khan, Haris Rauf, Haider Ali, Fakhar Zaman, Mohammad Rizwan, Wahab Riaz, Imran Khan, Mohammad Hafeez, Mohammad Hasnain and Kashif Bhatti. Of those missing the start, only wicketkeeper Rizwan would be classed a first-choice Test player.
Pakistan’s tour of England is set to include three Tests and three Twenty20 internationals.
The squad will have a 14-day isolation period on arrival before continuing their preparations ahead of the first Test with two internal four-day warm-up matches.
It is expected that the first Test will take place in Manchester in August but the England and Wales Cricket Board said the behind-closed-doors match schedule would be announced in “due course.” 
Pakistan is experiencing a surge in coronavirus cases, with nearly 200,000 declared cases and more than 4,000 deaths, while cases are falling in Britain.


Abu Dhabi's Etihad auditing Pakistan-issued pilot licences amid concerns

Updated 02 July 2020

Abu Dhabi's Etihad auditing Pakistan-issued pilot licences amid concerns

  • Says it is trying to verify the qualifications and licenses of the Pakistani pilots employed by the airlines
  • UAE's General Civil Aviation Authority said in a statement it was in contact with authorities in Pakistan over the issue 

DUBAI: Etihad Airways is auditing its pilots with Pakistan-issued licenses, the Abu Dhabi airline said on Thursday.
Last month, Pakistan grounded 262 pilots amid suspicions they cheated on their examinations to operate aircraft, and the United Arab Emirates aviation regulator has said it was reviewing licenses issued in the country.
"We have worked closely with the (UAE) General Civil Aviation Authority (GCAA) to verify the qualifications and licenses of the Pakistani pilots employed by Etihad," an Etihad spokeswoman told Reuters.
"While we can confirm the authenticity of these pilots, we are however carrying out further precautionary due diligence with an additional audit."
The GCAA in a statement released earlier on Thursday said it was reviewing its records to ensure no "suspicious licences issued by the Pakistan Civil Aviation Authority" had entered its system.
The GCAA said it was in contact with Pakistani authorities but did not indicate whether it had taken any preliminary action against pilots with licences issued in the country.
On Tuesday, the European Union Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) suspended two Pakistani airlines' authorization to fly to the bloc for six months.
A day earlier Vietnam announced that it was grounding all 12 Pakistani pilots working in the country.