‘I didn’t get it at my book launch’ – Ravi Shastri on positive COVID-19 test amid England test spree

Shastri felt he could have come into contact with the Unholy Virus during the third test at Headingley in Leeds.

Ravi Shastri. (Photo by Satyabrata Tripathy/Hindustan Times via Getty Images)

Indian team head coach Ravi Shastri has faced a lot of criticism lately after attending his book launch in London ahead of the fourth Test against England at the Kennington Oval. Shortly after, he tested positive for COVID-19 and reports began to emerge that he had contracted the coronavirus after attending the rally at the book launch.

However, the 59-year-old refuted the claims, saying none of the launch panty attendants caught COVID-19. The veteran mentioned that he might have come into contact with the Unholy Virus during the third test at the Headingley in Leeds. Mumbai-born Shastri said he has no regrets attending his book launch.

I have absolutely no regrets, says Ravi Shastri

“There were about 250 people there and no one got COVID from that party. I didn’t get it at my book launch because it was 31st (August) and I tested positive on 3rd September,” Shastri said in an interview with The Guardian.

“It can’t happen in three days. I think I got it in Leeds (where the third test was). I have absolutely no regrets because the people I met at this reception were fabulous,” he said.

“And it was good for the boys to go out and meet different people rather than constantly being in their rooms. At the oval test, you were climbing stairs used by 5,000 people. So pointing fingers at the launch of a book?” Shastri added.

After Shastri, India’s bowling coach Bharat Arun and field coach R Sridhar has also tested positive for the virus. But it was Indian physio Yogesh Parmar’s second positive COVID test result that put the cat among the pigeons in the Indian camp.

In the end, the fifth and final Test at Old Trafford in Manchester had to be postponed indefinitely. Indian senior players showed apprehensions about taking part in the match, after which the decision was made. The fate of the game is not yet decided.

As for Shastri, his tenure as India’s head coach is set to end after the 2021 T20 World Cup in the United Arab Emirates.

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