The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) have released a statement saying that the board is presently working with the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) towards rescheduling the cancelled Manchester Test.
“The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) along with the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) have jointly decided to call off the 5th Test Match scheduled at Manchester in ongoing India’s tour of England 2021,” BCCI Secretary Jay Shah said in the statement.
“The BCCI and ECB held several rounds of discussion to find a way to play the Test Match, however, the outbreak of Covid-19 in the Indian team contingent forced the decision of calling off the Old Trafford Test Match. In lieu of the strong relationship between BCCI and ECB, the BCCI has offered to ECB a rescheduling of the cancelled Test match. Both the Boards will work towards finding a window to reschedule this Test match.”
The fifth Test between India and England was cancelled on Friday amid a chaotic turn of events during which the host board’s statement on the visitors changed from “unable to field a team and will instead forfeit the match” to “regrettably unable to field a team”.
“The BCCI has always maintained that the safety and well-being of the players is of paramount importance and there will be no comprise on that aspect.”
The development came after the visiting team was left on tenterhooks following physio Yogesh Parmar’s positive COVID-19 test that led to concerns that the infection could spread during the match which was cancelled a couple of hours before toss.
It is learnt that led by skipper Virat Kohli, who had the biggest apprehension of playing the game, the players, late on Thursday, got into a huddle and couldn’t be convinced by the BCCI brass to play the game.
The initial statement issued by the England and Wales Cricket Board categorically mentioned the word “forfeit” but that was later omitted from a revised media release.
Both statements are in possession of PTI.
“Due to fears of a further increase in the number of COVID cases inside the camp, India are regrettably unable to field a team,” read the revised England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) statement.
(with PTI inputs)