Indian cricketers to get a three-week break before England series
In a bid to counter the mental fatigue amid lengthy spells of the bio-secure bubble, the Indian team management has decided to give its players a three-week break after the completion of the World Test Championship final. The WTC final against New Zealand will commence on June 18 at the Ageas Bowl in Southampton. Thereafter, the players will have a break for 20 days.
A BCCI official informed about the development
"As skipper Virat Kohli and coach Ravi Shastri had told the media at the pre-departure press conference, there will be a break. There is a six-week gap between WTC final and opening Test against England, so we had to address the issue of players' well-being. Within UK, they can disperse off, go for a holiday, meet friends and family," a senior BCCI official said.
'A great opportunity to restructure', Virat Kohli had said
Virat Kohli had said, "I feel like after you are done with WTC, I think it's a great opportunity to refresh and restructure. We would have finished our quarantine period and just for the guys to be normal and just disconnect again."
The schedule of India's UK tour
The WTC final is scheduled to begin on June 18. Thereafter, the Indian team will compete in a five-match Test series against England. There is a 42-day gap between the championship finale and the first Test against England. Trent Bridge (August 4), Lord's (August 12), Headingley (August 25), Kennington Oval (September 2), and Emirates Old Trafford (September 10) will host the five Tests respectively.
Why can't the Indian players return after WTC final?
India, gripped by the second wave of COVID-19 pandemic, remains on the red list of the UK government. Upon arriving in England, one has to "quarantine for 10 days in a hotel" and "take a COVID-19 test on or before second day and on or after day 8 of quarantining". The Indian team will have to undergo another 10-day quarantine after revisiting the country.