Vitality Blast 2021 – Ollie Pope to miss four Surrey Blast fixtures after being required to self-isolate
Batter comes into contact with Covid-19 carrier, but not while on England duty
Pope, the middle-order batter, had been due to link up with his county this week following England’s Test series defeat against New Zealand, but has been forced into self-isolation in line with track-and-trace protocols.
He will miss home games against Sussex, Hampshire, Essex and Somerset, but is expected to be available for the London derby against Middlesex on June 25. Surrey are currently unbeaten in their Blast campaign, having won each of their opening three fixtures.
“Ollie Pope will not be available to play cricket until June 24 having had contact with someone who has tested positive for Covid-19,” a Surrey statement said. “He will now have to self-isolate until that time.
“Pope did not come into contact with the individual during his time with England in the recent LV= Insurance Test series against New Zealand and he has not had any contact with any Surrey CCC players or staff.”
A handful of county cricketers have missed games this season due to Covid-related issues. Ben Duckett missed Nottinghamshire’s win against Northamptonshire on Sunday as a precaution, while Tom Helm, the Middlesex seamer, has been self-isolating after testing positive, ruling him out of the early rounds of the Blast.
The rest of England’s Test squad have either returned to their counties already or are due to shortly, though Rory Burns has been given a short break by Surrey and will return next week.
Matt Roller is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo. @mroller98