Brisbane Heat suffered a dual blow on the same day as Mujeeb Ur Rahman tested positive for Coronavirus in Queensland which would rule him out for at least two weeks from now. On the same day, Heat’s star opener Tom Banton has also pulled out of the league.
After landing in Brisbane last week, Mujeeb was alright but during the mandatory Quarantine, he reported symptoms and was immediately taken to Queensland hospital. Associated Press further reported that the Afghanistan mystery spinner will remain under the watch of the Queensland Health Department until he is cleared to link up with the Heat.
"We will work with the relevant authorities to ensure the integrity of the competition and well-being of the player are suitably addressed. He is a young man far from home and we will ensure he is looked after,'' Queensland Cricket CEO Terry Svenson said in the statement.
Mujeeb being infected with the virus was not the only blow Heat received with English opener Tom Banton withdrawing from the league, thanks to the numerous biosecure bubbles he has been part of lately. While he was in an IPL stint with Kolkata Knight Riders in the UAE, he was part of England's limited-overs bubbles against Ireland, Pakistan and Australia.
"It has been harder than I thought spending so much time in the hubs and bubbles and I came to the realization that it wasn't doing me much good. I know the Heat looked after me really well during the BBL last year and I was confident that they would understand when I spoke to Boof [Darren Lehmann] and Lynny [Chris Lynn] about going home to regroup.
"I'd like to thank the fans and members who are getting ready to support the Heat during the tournament and pass on my regrets to them that I won't be there,” Banton said in a statement.
Brisbane Heat will play their first match on December 11 against the Melbourne Stars in Canberra.