Sudden series cancellation in Australia put coronavirus outbreak in perspective for Black Caps, coach says

The Black Caps have returned to New Zealand with a new perspective on the coronavirus outbreak after their short but different experience in Australia.

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Gary Stead said the team only had "hours" to pack and catch their flight after the series was cancelled. Source: 1 NEWS

The Black Caps played their first ODI in the Chappell-Hadlee series on Friday against Australia in an empty Sydney Cricket Ground after Cricket Australia made the decision to close off the match from the public due to the growing concerns around Covid-19.

That was followed by pace bowler Lockie Ferguson being put into isolation after complaining of a sore throat following the 71-run loss before his test came back negative last night.

Before that result was confirmed though, the remainder of the Chappell-Hadlee series was cancelled and the Black Caps were flying back home to news of the Government's soon-to-be imposed travel requirements which will see most people arriving in New Zealand forced into self-isolation for 14 days.

Upon arrival at Auckland Airport, head coach Gary Stead told 1 NEWS the past few days were a lot to take in.

"The virus and the way it's spread and the way things have happened, it's pretty unprecedented times," Stead said.

"It just really puts into perspective with cricket that it's just a game."

Stead said they felt the right decisions were made in Australia regarding the remainder of the series and getting the team home.

"The cricket sort of became second to what other, bigger things that are happening in the world at the moment.

"We only found out a few hours ago so it was a quick get-on-the-bus and get ready to come home pretty quickly.

"For us, getting home and seeing families and everyone being well is the main thing."

In a statement from New Zealand Cricket last night, the three-match T20 series between the Black Caps and Australia in New Zealand starting next week was also cancelled.