30 Australian cricket stars stranded in India amid worsening COVID-19 situation
India has been battling COVID-19 and more than 30 Australian cricket players, coaches and commentators have been left stranded after Sydney made it illegal for them to return.
Stars Adam Zampa and Kane Richardson were able to arrive in Melbourne on a commercial flight from Doha via a travel loophole.
Prime Minister Scott Morrison revealed that routes had now been closed to put a total ban on travel from India, which recorded 400,000 new cases of coronavirus.
Thirty-four Australians remain in India - 12 players, 11 coaches, four commentators, two umpires and five support staff, as well as a commentator from New Zealand who lives in Australia.
Among the star players are Glenn Maxwell, Pat Cummins, Steve Smith and David Warner, while big names like Ricky Ponting, Simon Katich and David Hussey are coaching.
Apart from media personalities, more than 9,000 Australian citizens are believed to be in India. Mr Morrison promised that the sporting stars would not receive any special treatment under the new set of rules to protect Australia's zero Covid strategies.
The twenty20 tournament is due to wrap up on May 30 and the players are housed in a 'biosecure bubble,' with no plans to cancel any fixtures.
India is in the eye of the world's Covid storm, with funeral pyres burning around the clock in Delhi and Mumbai and hospitals under guard to protect oxygen supplies.
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