Sri Lanka cancel training due to "severe" air pollution in Delhi, Bangladesh brave it out with masks

Sri Lanka cancel training due to "severe" air pollution in Delhi, Bangladesh brave it out with masks

New Delhi | Sri Lanka cancelled their opening training session in the national capital on Saturday due to "severe" air pollution but Bangladesh braved the adverse weather conditions to train, a day after choosing to skip their practice session.

Bangladesh, who arrived here on Wednesday, had decided against practising on Friday as the pollution levels in the city hit the "severe plus" category.

Sri Lanka followed them into staying indoors on Saturday when the Air Quality Index stood at 407 in the morning.

"It was cancelled owing to the air quality issue," said a SLC source, referring to the Saturday's training session.

However, Bangladesh players, wearing masks, came out for practice at the Feroz Shah Kotla.

An AQI between zero and 50 is considered "good", 51 and 100 "satisfactory", 101 and 200 "moderate", 201 and 300 "poor", 301 and 400 "very poor", and 401 and 500 "severe".

It is unlikely that the International Cricket Council (ICC) will shift the game out of Delhi but the call on whether the match will go ahead will only be taken on that day.

"We are currently assessing the situation. The ICC and our hosts the BCCI take the well-being of all participants seriously and are monitoring the air quality in Delhi. We are taking expert advice to assess the situation," an ICC spokesperson told PTI.

The air quality is usually assessed by match officials on the day of a game.

It is not the first time that Sri Lanka are having to deal with Delhi's notorious air pollution. The players had to wear masks during the Test series back in 2017. Even the Bangladesh cricketers resorted to wearing masks in Delhi ahead of a T20 in 2019.

On Friday, Bangladesh team director Khaled Mahmud said the players developed cough after going out in the city and therefore the management decided to cancel the first training session.

On Friday, the air quality plummeted to the "severe plus" category.

"Many( cricketers) went out yesterday (Thursday) and now they are having some kind of coughing so there is a risk factor involved and so we cancelled the training so that they don't get unwell," said Mahmud at the team hotel.

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