The worried wife of Australian fast bowler Jason Behrendorff has spoken out after copping a barrage of hate online by vile trolls.
The left-arm fast bowler was stranded in covid-ravaged India after winning a contract to play for the Chennai Super Kings, but has now fled along with three dozen other Australian players, coaches, commentators and umpires to the safety of the Maldives.
Juvelle Behrendorff told the West Australian that over the past few days her social media messages have been filled with vicious comments saying they hope her husband Jason catches the virus.
Juvelle Behrendorff, the worried wife of Australian fast bowler Jason (pictured together) has spoken out after copping a barrage of hate by vile online trolls
At the moment there is a travel ban in place for anyone travelling from India, meaning 9000 Australian citizens and permanent residents remain trapped in the Covid hellhole as total cases surge past 25 million.
Many have accused the well-paid Australian cricketers of queue-jumping their way out of a country they knew would be dangerous.
But Mrs Behrendorff said the players were told by Cricket Australia it would be safe in the IPL’s player bubble.
However, those assurances crumbled after multiple cricketers testing positive within the opening weeks, leading to the lucrative competition being abandoned.
‘They need to get out of India as the biosecurity bubble is no longer and they are going to be left to fend for themselves,’ she said.
‘They aren’t jumping the queue and they aren’t asking the Australian Government to pay for any special flights or anything. The players are willing to do whatever the Government wants them to do and just sit in a line and wait.
‘Once they complete two weeks of quarantine in the Maldives they will follow the same application process like all Australians have to get home.’
Jason Behrendorff is pictured at New Deli Airport in full hazmat gear before heading to the Maldives
Workers in India carry the body of a person who has died of the Covid-19 coronavirus disease as other funeral pyres are seen burning during a mass cremation held at a crematorium
Mrs Behrendorff had a thriving styling business before it was decimated by the pandemic and the couple have two young children to support.
She said her husband is a full-time cricketer who plays the game to keep a ‘roof over our heads’ so the decision was made to go after they were told it was be safe.
Although Behrendorff is a star Twenty20 player who represented Australia, among the world’s biggest names in the IPL he isn’t a ‘big paid player’ getting the million-dollar contracts that some others are.
Cricket Australia announced on Thursday that a 38-strong cohort of Aussie players, coaches, commentators, umpires and support staff left India and will now remain in the Maldives until the travel ban from India is lifted after May 15.
The organisation also said that some of the sport’s biggest names, including David Warner, Pat Cummins, Steve Smith, Marcus Stoinis and Ricky Ponting, are not seeking exemptions to bypass travel bans from the Australian government.
They will spend at least 10 days in Maldives before quarantining for another 14 days upon returning to Australia on a charter flight organised by Indian cricket’s governing body.
Australia’s cricket stars have left India for the luxurious safety of the Maldives (pictured, Steve Smith at the airport)
Upon arriving in the Maldives (stock image), travellers need only present a negative Covid-19 test from the last 96 hours
Ordinary Australians trapped in India since the travel ban will now be repatriated on special government flights from May 15, with the Howard Springs facility in the Northern Territory used to quarantine them.
Prime Minister Scott Morrison is expected to announce details of the plan on Friday, after intense pressure from Australians trapped in the coronavirus-riddled nation.
The 900 Australians deemed ‘vulnerable’ will be allowed to fly back first, with all passengers required to present two negative Covid-19 tests before boarding.
For the cricketers heading to the Maldives. they need only present a negative Covid-19 test from the last 96 hours.
Then they must wait until May 15 when the border opens with Australia, and fly home straight into hotel quarantine for 14 days.
Cricket Australia’s interim chief executive Nick Hockley said on Wednesday: ‘The absolute priority is to get them home safe and well.’
‘We’re not seeking any kind of special exemptions whatsoever.’
Pictured: Pat Cummins and Becky Bosto. Cummins is one of the players who was stuck in India during the travel ban
Pictured: David and Candice Warner. David Warner will fly to the Maldives with his Australian colleagues then return to Australia when the ban is lifted – where they will all undergo hotel quarantine
HOW THE MALDIVES LOOPHOLE WORKS
Any visitor can travel to the Maldives, as long as they have proof of a negative Covid test in the 96 hours prior.
From April 27, those coming from India cannot stay at tourist facilities in heavily populated areas – but can stay in private residences.
They are also allowed to stay in resorts and hotels in secluded areas of the islands.
On arrival back in Australia after the ban is lifted on May 15, they must still enter hotel quarantine for a fortnight in Australia, as with any overseas arrivals.
Source: Visit Maldives
Former Australian batsman Michael Hussey must remain in isolation in his hotel room in India for another 10 days after he tested positive on Tuesday.
‘He’s in good spirits… his symptoms are quite mild,’ Australian Cricketers’ Association chief executive Todd Greenberg told reporters.
‘He has relatively mid symptoms.’
Those heading to the Maldives will join former Australian opener Michael Slater, who was working as a commentator in India but managed to escape to the tropical island paradise earlier this week as the coronavirus crisis in India worsens.
A three-and-half hour flight away, there were about 450 new cases in the Maldives this each day this week, which is dwarfed by the 400,000 infections seen daily in India.
Cases have soared past 20 million in India since the pandemic began and deaths have surpassed 220,000, with the nation’s health system on the brink of collapse.
Australia bowlers Adam Zampa, Andrew Tye and Kane Richardson last week fled the IPL, returning home via Qatar.
But any Australian attempting that journey now risks jail time and fines amid the travel ban, though the prime minister said the possibility of such sanctions were remote.
A medical worker in PPE observes patients who have been infected by Covid-19 inside a makeshift care facility in a sports stadium at the Commonwealth Games Village in New Delhi
Around 9,000 Australians remain stranded in India, where the coronavirus crisis is worsening with around 400,000 new cases a day and hospitals at breaking point
Australians stranded in India
CHENNAI SUPER KINGS
KOLKATA KNIGHT RIDERS
ROYAL CHALLENGERS BANGALORE
**Adam Zampa, Kane Richardson (Royal Challengers Bangalore) and Andrew Tye (Rajasthan Royals) left the IPL early and beat the Morrison-government’s travel ban.