Australian cricketer Pat Cummins on 26 April donated $ 50000 to ‘PM Cares Fund’ for the purchase of oxygen supplies in India’s hospitals. Cummins, who is presently in India for the 14th season of the Indian Premier League urged fellow IPL cricketers to help India in time of need.
“There has been quite a bit of discussion over here as to whether it is appropriate for the IPL to continue while Covid-19 infection rates remain high. I’m advised that the Indian government is of the view that playing the IPL while the population is in lockdown provides a few hours of joy and respite each day at an otherwise difficult time for the country,” Cummins said in a statement on Twitter.
“I encourage my fellow IPL players — and anyone else around the world who has been touched by India’s passion and generosity — to contribute. I will kick it off with $ 50,000.”
Meanwhile, three Australian cricketers have left the IPL bio-bubble as the coronavirus situation in India has worsened. Earlier in the day, Royal Challengers Bangalore’s Kane Richardson and Adam Zampa pulled out citing personal reasons. Previously, Rajasthan Royals pacer Andrew Tye had left for Perth fearing that he may be “locked out” of his own country amid the situation in India.
Last week, England’s Liam Livingstone too returned home citing “bubble fatigue”, having spent nearly 10 months in a bio-secure environment.
Earlier a few foreigners left the bio-bubble as anxiety sky-rocketed with the increase in India’s Covid numbers. The country is reporting 3 lakh cases a day and this has caused a lot of Australians to rethink their decision to play in the tournament.
Anxiety pierced through IPL’s bio-secure bubble on 26 April with leading Indian off-spinner Ravichandran Ashwin and some Australian players withdrawing from the league amid the escalating Covid-19 crisis in India even as the BCCI insisted that the glitzy league will go on. The 34-year-old Ashwin, competing for Delhi Capitals, decided to take a break saying that his family is currently “putting up a fight against COVID-19” and he wants to support them. He hopes to return to the side “if things go in the right direction”.
However, Andrew Tye (Rajastan Royals) and the duo of Kane Richardson and Adam Zampa (both Royal Challengers Bangalore) withdrew as apprehension set in after a couple of weeks went by smoothly for the league being held in front of empty stands across nine venues.While Zampa and Richardson have not yet spoken about their “personal reasons” for leaving, Tye said he feared getting locked out of his own country owing to mounting quarantine cases from India in his hometown Perth.