The 5th and final Test match between India and England which was scheduled to begin on September 10 at Old Trafford, Manchester was canceled after the Covid-19 fear across the Indian camp. Meanwhile, ECB chairman Tom Harrison declared that the fifth Test match was not canceled due to the rescheduled Indian Premier League (IPL) 2021 which will begin in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) from September 19.
Notably, ahead of the 5th Test match junior physio Yogesh Parmer tested positive for Covid-19 in Manchester and many Indian players were in close contact with him. However, later Indian players were tested negative and the match was scheduled to begin but just a few hours before the play the match was called off.
Meanwhile, previously Head coach Ravi Shastri, bowling coach Bharat Arun and fielding coach Ramakrishnan Sridhar, were found positive for Covid-19 and they did not travel with the team to London for the 5th and final Test.
“This is not a situation which has been created by the rescheduled IPL’ : England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) chairman Tom Harrison
The England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) chief Tom Harrison told BBC Sport that the match between the teams got canceled due to the covid-19 outbreak and the situation has not been created due to the rescheduling of the Indian Premier League 2021.
“This is not a situation which has been created by the rescheduled IPL. I fundamentally do not believe that for a second.”
Meanwhile, former England captain Michael Vaughan feels that the decision to cancel the fifth Test was taken due to the money tied up with the IPL. Also, he believes that players are worried about getting contracted with the virus and being ruled out of the matches in the Indian Premier League.
However, Harrison dismissed the claims of people who said IPL was the reason behind the cancellation and said the Indian cricket team is a very passionate side for Test cricket. And they need to prioritize the mental health of cricketers.
“This Indian cricket team are as passionate about Test cricket as fans in our country are, and as our cricket team are as well. India simply felt that they got to a point where they weren’t able to take to the field. That is understandable.
“As administrators, we need to be really clear that mental health has to be a priority for us when we’re thinking about the length of tours and the conditions under which people were expected to perform.”: Harrison added
Notably, after not winning a series on English soil since 2007, Team India was leading the series by 2-1. Meanwhile, Harrison felt that canceling the match was the right decision but still he was disappointed.
“There is real disappointment because we wanted to have a crack at this Indian team,” the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) chief added.
“Players put an awful lot of work into preparing themselves mentally and physically to be ready, and we were ready. It will take a little bit off from them to come back down from that emotional let-down.”