England cricket team has on Sunday arrived at the Mattala International Airport to take part in the two-match test series against Sri Lanka, which got cancelled back in march due to Coronavirus pandemic.
The England players and support staff underwent antigen tests upon arrival.
Sri Lanka after closing its airspace to scheduled commercial flights since May now only has handful of repatriation flights and charters allowed.
“We are very excited about the Galle Tests,” Root told reporters at the time of arrival.
Airport staff in white hazmat suits sprayed the hands and footwear of the visitors and their luggage before they were allowed into the terminal for coronavirus tests.
Managing Director of England Men’s Cricket, Ashley Giles, said the team looked forward to playing at the seaside Galle stadium adjoining a colonial-era fort.
“To play in Galle will be very special –- it is one of the iconic venues in world cricket,” he said in a statement.
“The past 10 months have been uncertain for us all, but having international cricket returning to Sri Lanka will be a massive boost for cricket fans all over the world.”
— Sri Lanka Cricket 🇱🇰 (@OfficialSLC) January 3, 2021
Moreover, England abandoned their two-match Test tour of Sri Lanka in March on the second day of a practice match as the pandemic spread.
They will now play their two Tests starting on January 14 at the Galle stadium without any spectators.
Sri Lanka had just six reported cases when England pulled out in March, but the team returned to an island which now has over 44,000 infections and 211 deaths.