The women’s Ashes came under threat before they have begun on Friday when a member of England’s support staff at their Canberra base tested positive for Covid 19.
Captain Heather Knight admitted to ‘anxiety and nerves’ over the future of a multi-format series due to begin with the first Twenty20 international next Thursday.
Now England will undergo further rounds of testing before they can move on to Adelaide on a charter flight on Monday with the trip already hampered by strict conditions.
England captain Heather Knight admitted to ‘nerves and anxiety’ over Covid within the group on the eve of the Women’s Ashes in Australia
‘There are nerves and anxiety in the group,’ said Knight after the unnamed staff member’s positive test.
‘It will be a nervous 24-48 hours but the PCR tests we’ve done already have all come back negative, so fingers crossed.’
England women and their A squad who have travelled with them spent much of Christmas and the New Year in virtual isolation to ensure they could make the trip.
Action from the last Women’s Ashes series, which Australia won on English soil in 2019
‘People put in a colossal effort just to get out here,’ said Knight. ‘The lead up has been pretty average but it’s been out of our control.
‘We could only train at home as individuals with our households so we’ve had mums feeding bowling machines, boyfriends and girlfriends slinging and dads batting against our bowling!
‘It’s been pretty comical but not ideal for a series of this magnitude.’