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Auckland Pacer Ben Lister Becomes 1st Covid-19 Replacement

By IANS News
Oct 20, 2020 • 11:48 AM

Auckland seamer Ben Lister has become the first Covid-19 replacement to be used in cricket. He was called in as a replacement for batsman Mark Chapman before the start of the Plunket Shield match against Otago.

Chapman reported feeling ill on Monday and underwent a Covid-19 test with Lister being designated his replacement until the result is known.

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"Ben Lister starts as Covid-19 replacement with Mark Chapman awaiting test results after feeling ill yesterday," Auckland Cricket wrote on their Twitter handle.

The match commenced a day later as compared to the other Plunket Shield games going on, and as a result, Chapman's replacement could be announced before the toss. The 24-year-old took one wicket in the first innings as Otago were bowled out for just 186.

"I wasn't aware until I got here this morning that Mark Chapman had been feeling ill and had to get a Covid test. But from my perspective, it's great that he's not penalized for doing the right thing in what is obviously different times we face in the world," ESPNcricinfo quoted New Zealand coach Gary Stead, who was watching the match at Eden Park's outer oval, as saying.

"Just shows that we and cricket aren't immune to that either, so following the right protocols is definitely the right thing to do," he added.

The International Cricket Council, in July, had decided to allow Covid-19 substitutes for Tests amid the ongoing coronavirus pandemic which has so far claimed more than 10 lakh lives across the world. Since then, the guidelines have been adopted in domestic cricket as well.