Cricketing activities have been suspended for a while just as different boards across the globe are nearing towards the sport’s resumption, requests are being made from all across the world to the Board of control for Cricket in India (BCCI) over bilateral series. While there’s no denying that everyone wants to play with the Indian cricket team considering the sort of revenue it brings, the BCCI has refused to commit on any of the future tours amid the Coronavirus pandemic.
“The BCCI understands the situation and would like to help out other boards,” said treasurer Arun Dhumal to the New Indian Express. “But this has to be seen in the light of the Future Tours Programme (FTP) and ICC events that are already planned. In between, if we can accommodate others, we will give it a thought. At the moment, there is no clarity even about the T20 World Cup. So what can we say about requests from other countries? It will all depend on the situation.”
The forthcoming fixtures involving Virat Kohi & Co. include tours of Sri Lanka and South Africa. Although there’s optimism over the two series going ahead as scheduled, the BCCI has refused to put the seal of surety over any considering how drastically the situation around the world is changing in these times of COVID-19.
“The Sri Lanka series is part of the FTP. And the South African board approached us some time back, before the outbreak. We told them we would look into it. It’s not possible to say yes or no right now. We still don’t know what the travel situation will be and what kind of visa restrictions will be in place,” said Dhumal.
A short series against Zimbabwe has also been talked about but keeping in mind the quarantine norms, Dhumal isn’t sure if the Zimbabwe assignment can be done.
“It was linked to India’s tour of Zimbabwe. Now, we aren’t sure of the Zimbabwe series. We also have to see what the situation at the time is. If players have to be quarantined for 15 days after going somewhere and for as many days after coming back, then a short series may not be a good idea,” he said.
The BCCI treasurer asserted that the players’ health and safety remain most important for the board. Cricketing activities will resume but not at the cost of players’ safety.
“First and foremost, we have to be 100 percent sure that our players are safe and healthy. Then only will we let cricket resume. Nothing will compromise the safety of players.”
(With inputs from timesnownews)