Kiwis fume after West Indies players caught breaking quarantine

Sam Goodwin
·Sports Editor
·3-min read
The West Indies cricket team, pictured here in England earlier in 2020.
The West Indies team are in New Zealand for limited-overs and Test matches. (Photo by Dan Mullan/Getty Images for ECB)

New Zealanders are fuming after the touring West Indies cricket team were caught flouting strict coronavirus protocols.

The West Indies squad will be banned from training and confined to hotel rooms after committing multiple breaches of New Zealand quarantine rules.

‘DISGUSTED’: Cricket fans stunned by 'filthy' Mitchell Starc act

‘FAMILY FIRST’: Cricket world erupts over Kohli announcement

New Zealand health authorities used CCTV to capture the rule-breaking, including players sharing meals and mingling in groups.

As they prepare for upcoming games against the Black Caps, the West Indies were afforded a similar modified quarantine arrangement as the Wallabies when getting ready for the Bledisloe Cup last month.

All players and support staff passed their initial two COVID tests, allowing them to train at Lincoln University together, away from the Christchurch hotel they've called home for the past 12 days.

But those freedoms have been reined in by Kiwi health authorities who are following the letter of the law while trying to maintain NZ's COVID-free status.

“It is a privilege to come here but in return they have to stick to the rules”, Director General of Health Ashley Bloomfield said.

“Keeping COVID-19 out of our communities and keeping our staff safe depends on it.

“They didn’t do that, despite agreeing to abide by the parameters of the exemption.”

Ashley Bloomfield and Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern, pictured here speaking to the media.
Dr Ashley Bloomfield and Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern speak to the media in Auckland. (Photo by Fiona Goodall/Getty Images)

New Zealand Cricket said it supported the ban.

“NZC will continue working with the West Indies team and management, and relevant government agencies, to ensure there is no repeat of these violations,” they said.

Kiwis were left fuming at the actions of the West Indians, with some saying the government should never have approved their tour in the first place.

“What is it with sports people and privilege,” one user wrote on social media, while another labelled them “d*ckheads”.

One new case in quarantine in New Zealand

The controversy comes as the Ministry of Health announced one new case of COVID-19 in a quarantine facility, but none in the community.

The positive case arrived on November 3 from Romania via Qatar and Australia.

“They are a family member of a previous case from managed isolation and had already been transferred to the Auckland quarantine facility,” authorities said.

New Zealand has successfully curbed the spread of the coronavirus after introducing a strict lockdown and tight border controls.

Almost all the country's small number of current cases are among people arriving from overseas, who are held in mandatory managed isolation facilities for 14 days.

The West Indies squad had their third and final COVID-19 tests on Wednesday and will be released on Friday, where they will head to Queenstown for warmup matches.

The first of three Twenty20 internationals against New Zealand is on November 27 in Auckland.

with agencies

Click here to sign up to our newsletter for all the latest and breaking stories from Australia and around the world.