Brisbane Heat pair ordered apart from team after suspected bubble breach

Brisbane Heat duo Chris Lynn and Dan Lawrence are under investigation over a suspected breach of the Big Bash League bubble in Canberra but will be allowed to play against Sydney Thunder on Monday night.

Cricket Australia confirmed Lynn and Lawrence came into contact with members of the public in the national capital on Saturday night. They have tested negative to COVID-19 but will have to maintain distance from teammates and opposition players in the dressing-room and when they take the field.

Chris Lynn is under scrutiny over his movements on Saturday night.Credit:Getty Images

Players are permitted to go out for dinner or a drink but must remain in their own group and be seated in the outdoor area of a premises.

Authorities are less concerned about players contracting coronavirus and spreading it throughout the competition than the risk of them potentially winding up associated with a virus hotspot should it develop, jeopardising their potential to cross borders if they are shut down.

“It is important we maintain the integrity of the biosecure hub to ensure the safety of the public, players, staff and officials and minimise issues associated with travel between state borders during the tournament,” said Sean Carroll, CA’s head of security and integrity.

“While we are fortunate to live in a country with a low rate of infection compared with many other parts of the world, we are still in the midst of a global pandemic and, as we’ve seen on a number of occasions in Australia, COVID-19 breakouts and border closures remain a genuine risk.

“We are always monitoring the public health situation and attempting to strike the appropriate bio-security balance between keeping everyone safe on both sides of the hub and providing as much freedom as possible for those within it.

“We appreciate that this has been a challenging year for everyone, but we must insist on our biosecurity measures being respected and followed so as not to jeopardise public health and safety or the viability of the tournament.”

CA chief medical officer John Orchard was confident Lynn and Lawrence could successfully be separated from others on Monday night at Manuka Oval.

“They must maintain a physical distance on and particularly off the field (indoors) with teammates, opposing players, staff and match officials. We have protocols in place for all matches for interaction between those inside and outside the hub," he said.

“Factors including the outdoor nature of the contest, the generally socially-distanced nature of cricket on-field and the fact Canberra is considered a low-risk city support the conclusion that both can play tonight without posing a meaningful risk.”

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