Australia batter Matt Renshaw who was one of three players to come in for the third Test against South Africa at the SCG has tested positive for Covid-19. However, the southpaw is expected to play full part in the game. Renshaw was believed to be feeling unwell 45 minutes or so before the toss, but the rest of the team went through the drills.
He then with a positive result on a Rapid Antigen Test (RAT) but was named in the XI. He will play his first Test for Australia in nearly five years.
He stood away from the rest of the squad during the national anthem, but the result of his Covid test was not made public till then. During Australia's innings, Renshaw was pictured sitting on a plastic chair a few metres away from the rest of his teammates. It was only around the 10-over mark, that the public were made aware of it.
Ahead of the New Year's Test, Australia captain Pat Cummins had spoken of his surprise of how Covid has not affected his his team at all. "I still don't know how we haven't had Covid in our team now I think about it," Cummins said on Tuesday (January 3).
"It feels like we're back to normal life."
This is not the first time we' have seen a Covid positive player take field. In the Commonwealth Games Final in Birmingham last year, all-rounder Tahila McGrath took field despite testing positive. Like Renshaw, she stood away from her teammates and also did not celebrate any wicket with her teammates, instead congratulated them from a distance.
Covid substitutes are permitted according to the ICC norms, a like-for-like substitution will be allowed for a player with Covid symptoms. Whether or not Australia will opt for it will completely depend on how Renshaw's health holds up throughout the game.