No professional cricket in England till at least July: ECB
The England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB), on Friday, confirmed that no professional cricket will take place in UK till at least July 1 due to coronavirus pandemic. England's upcoming Test series against West Indies has been postponed. The board has also called-off women's limited-overs fixtures against India. However, ECB will make attempts to reschedule the international matches. Here is more.
"We are in the midst of a worldwide crisis and our priority will be to protect the society. There will be no cricket unless it's safe to play. Our schedule will only go ahead if government guidance permits," ECB chief executive Tom Harrison said.
England had to host West Indies for a three-match Test series in June as a part of home season. In July, England are due to host Australia for three T20Is and as many ODIs, Pakistan (three Tests and T20Is) and Ireland (three ODIs). As per the current schedule, England will play their final international on September 15, before the T20 World Cup commences.
Although quite a few rounds will be lost in the four-day County Championship season, slots for red-ball and white-ball cricket will later be revised. The Twenty20 Blast will be pushed to a later date in the season. The tournament was scheduled to be held between May 28 and September 5. However, all matches slated for June will be transferred to a later date.
Amid a number of speculations around the inaugural hundred-ball league, ECB will discuss the competition's fate next week. Besides, with growing concerns of the deadly COVID-19, the tournament is likely to be pushed by a year. "Our plan is to reschedule international matches as late as possible in the season to give the best chance of play," Harrison concluded.