KARACHI, Pakistan

Australian cricketer Fawad Ahmed, who is taking part in Pakistan’s premier cricket league, has tested positive for coronavirus, officials said on Monday.

The leg-spinner, who has represented Australia in One Day International and Twenty20, developed symptoms two days ago and was immediately isolated, his franchise Islamabad United said in a tweet.

However, other team members tested negative for the coronavirus.

“One of our players, Fawad Ahmed, tested positive for COVID-19 and was immediately put in isolation 2 days ago. All other Islamabad United players and members have tested negative and have been cleared to play. We wish Fawad a speedy recovery,” the tweet said.

Ahmed, who is appearing in the Pakistan Super League (PSL) for the first time, confirmed the development.

“Thanks for all the kind messages, please keep remember me in your prayers, much needed, and please everyone stays safe,” he said in a tweet.

The development came days after the South Asian country lifted almost all coronavirus-related restrictions, even allowing spectators to watch the league in full capacity in play-off matches. Currently, 50% of spectators are allowed to enter the stadium.

Doctors fear that complete relaxation may trigger a third wave of the virus in the cricket-crazy country, which has reported a significant drop in COVID-19 cases in recent months.

Founded in 2016, the PSL is Pakistan’s premier cricket league and has attracted a good number of foreign cricketers, putting skids on the path to restoring international cricket in the country.

International cricket has gradually returned to Pakistan since 2015, following years of suspension after a terrorist attack on the Sri Lankan team in the northeastern city of Lahore in 2009.

Currently, six teams – Islamabad United, Karachi Kings, Quetta Gladiators, Multan Sultan, Lahore Qalandars, and Peshawar Zalmy – are participating in the sixth PSL edition.

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