Sana Mir, the former Pakistan women's captain, has tested positive for Covid-19. Mir, who was in the PCB commentary box for the ongoing Quaid-e-Azam trophy final in Karachi, had showed symptoms of fever on day three of the match, and subsequently underwent a test, which came positive. Following that news, the entire production team, as well as those who might have come in close contact with Mir, have been asked by the PCB to undergo Covid-19 tests, with results expected tonight.
Mir has been isolated in the team hotel at the Pearl Continental and did not travel to the stadium on Monday. It is understood that everyone else on the production team who had worked with Mir were allowed to carry on with their daily routines at the National Stadium.
ESPNcricinfo understands that there is no separate biosecure bubble for the commentators, who have been allowed to enter and leave the facility without any restrictions. While some commentators have been staying at the team hotel, others have headed back to their respective homes at the end of each day.
So far, none of the other commentators - including Bazid Khan, Tariq Saeed, Ali Younis, Sikandar Bakhat and presenter Sawera Pasha - have shown any symptoms. A PCB spokesperson confirmed that the entire facility had been disinfected, but a decision on whether or not to isolate everyone else would be taken only after obtaining the test results.
Pakistan have had a hectic home schedule in recent months, including the National T20 Cup, the white-ball series against Zimbabwe in Rawalpindi, as well as four PSL matches in Karachi. While the PCB had created biosecure bubbles for the players during these matches, there were multiple breaches, forcing the board to reprimand certain players during the National T20 Cup.
Thank you for all your wishes and prayers for my birthday and recovery. I have tested positive and only have mild symptoms for now. Informed the people who were in close contact, all are negative till now Alhamdulillah. Keep wearing the mask, the act may protect you and others.— Sana Mir ثناء میر (@mir_sana05) January 5, 2021
Between the second and third round of games in the QeA Trophy, nine Sindh players, including captain Sarfraz Ahmed, experienced flu-like symptoms. However, since their Covid-19 test results came back negative, they all remained in the bubble and only fast bowler Mir Hamza returned home after being declared unwell.
Balochistan's wicketkeeper-batsman Bismillah Khan was found to be Covid-19 positive during the second round match against Southern Punjab, but he had not been tested until the fourth day, after which he was substituted on the field by Adnan Akmal, who himself would test positive a round later and is presently in quarantine in Lahore.
During the PSL, several players and stakeholders tested positive for Covid-19. This had a spillover effect on Pakistan's tour to New Zealand, with six members of the travelling contingent found to be Covid-19 positive, including four players who were reported to have "historic infections". With so many infections recorded after the team arrived in New Zealand, questions were raised about the PCB's procedures and protocols to ensure safety.
The PCB's High Performance Centre in Lahore is also operating at nearly full capacity following strict SOPs. Despite that, a coach and a top manager in players development both tested positive for the virus. They both rejoined the office after recovering.
Umar Farooq is ESPNcricinfo's Pakistan correspondent