As the Manchester Test got cancelled just a few hours before the scheduled start, it gave birth to a series of controversies. Amid the Covid19 scare in the Indian camp, the match faced an indefinite postponement resulting in a wide range of reactions from the cricket community around the world.
The entire thing started when last Thursday Indian physio Yogesh Parmar tested positive for the Covid19. Due to his close proximity with the Indian players, the Indian team had to go into isolation cancelling their last training session. However, the Indian players returned negative in the RT-PCR test on Thursday evening.
Despite having the negative test reports, the Indian players were anxious to hit the field leading to the cancellation of the series finale. According to the ECB press release, the 5th Test witnessed a halt as India was unable to field a team.
However, former England fast bowler Steve Harmison refused to swallow the statement and blamed the upcoming Indian Premier League (IPL) starting from September 19 for the cancellation of the match. He remarked, “It’s rubbish, it really is. My initial thoughts are that this is the beginning of the end for Test cricket. But this is all about the IPL. End of. As much as I’d want to sugarcoat it, I don’t think I can.” He went on criticising the Indian team saying, “It’s a short window there and money makes the world go round, but there’s a point where integrity comes into it. For me, this is India flexing their muscles and saying, ‘we’re not interested in playing my bat, my ball, see you later.’”
On the other hand, former Pakistan captain Inzamam-ul-Haq took the side of the Indian players and backed their decision keeping in mind that India lost most of its support stuff including the head coach Ravi Sashtri. Former England skipper Nasser Hussain took the relentless cricket scheduling as the culprit behind the cancellation of the Manchester Test.
England pacer James Anderson also lamented the cancellation and hoped for another match at the venue in the future. In fact, the BCCI president Sourav Ganguly will be travelling to the UK on September 22 to discuss the future rescheduling of the cancelled match.
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