Moeen Ali set to miss entirety of England's Test series in Sri Lanka

Moeen Ali set to miss ENTIRETY of England’s Test series against Sri Lanka… with all-rounder to stay in quarantine for ‘another two or three days’ after testing positive for COVID-19 and experiencing mild symptoms

  • Moeen Ali tested positive for coronavirus upon arriving in Sri Lanka last week 
  • The all-rounder has spent 10 days in isolation but has experienced symptoms
  • He now faces another two or three days in isolation and looks set to miss out
  • The focus now will be on Ali regaining fitness ahead of the tour to India  

Moeen Ali will not leave his coronavirus quarantine on Wednesday as previously planned and is now highly unlikely to play any part in England’s Test series against Sri Lanka.

Moeen tested positive for Covid-19 on arrival in the country and told to isolate for 10 days, which would have allowed him to rejoin the squad on the eve of Thursday’s series opener in Galle.

But the all-rounder has experienced mild symptoms and an abundance of caution from the Sri Lankan government, who are overseeing all guidance on the virus, means he now faces another two or three days of isolation.

England all-rounder Moeen Ali looks set to miss the entirety of the Test series in Sri Lanka 

The England and Wales Cricket Board are understood to be sympathetic to the decision and now expect Moeen to be allowed out of his private accommodation towards the weekend.

Given the tight time-frame, the 33-year-old spinner is effectively ruled out of the second Test starting on January 22 too, with too little time to get him match sharp. 

Instead, the plan is for him to begin working back towards fighting fitness in time to play a role in the the subsequent tour of India.

Chris Woakes spent a week confined to quarters after being identified as a close contact of Moeen – the pair having shared transport to the team hotel – and feels for his team-mate.

Ali tested positive for COVID-19 on his arrival in Sri Lanka and has developed mild symptoms

‘Poor bloke, he’s obviously had it a little bit tough having been in isolation pretty much since we got here,’ said Woakes.

‘Everyone’s checking in with him, making sure he’s okay, but I can only imagine what he’s going through. I did seven days and he’s ended up doing a lot more than that. He had some symptoms which I think he’s over now, which is good, but you don’t wish this illness on anyone.

‘Thankfully he’s recovering pretty well. I think he’ll be excited to get out and be amongst the group again.’

As well as regular check-ins from medical staff and the availability of psychologist Dr James Bickley, who is travelling with the side, Moeen has had his team-mates to rely on during a challenging time.

Seam bowler Chris Woakes spent time in isolation and feels for his stricken team-mate 

‘We’re trying to get around him,’ said Woakes.

‘I was in contact with him all last week when I was in isolation – we were both talking about what we were up to. I know the guys have played a lot of Playstation with him as well and talking to him through the headsets.

‘It’s tricky in these sort of times when you’re having to lock yourself away in a room, I’ve certainly not gone through that before so it is unprecedented times.’ 


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