We noticed you're blocking ads.

Keep supporting great journalism by turning off your ad blocker.

Questions about why you are seeing this? Contact us

Font Size

- Aa +

Thu 4 Dec 2008 12:31 AM

Font Size

- Aa +

England agree to resume India Test tour

Team flies to Abu Dhabi on Thursday before returning to India for Chennai Test.

England will fly to Abu Dhabi on Thursday before resuming their two-Test tour of India which was in danger of being abandoned in the aftermath of last week's terror attacks in Mumbai.

"After spending the last 72 hours consulting security advisers and Government agencies at the highest level, the England and Wales Cricket Board has determined that England will leave for Abu Dhabi tomorrow (Thursday) to resume their two Test tour of India," said an England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) statement.

The first Test, due to take place in Chennai from Dec. 11, and the second in Mohali from December 19, had been in doubt following the attacks which left 188 people dead and over 300 injured.

Kevin Pietersen's side had returned to Britain last week after the Mumbai atrocity when the scheduled last two games of their seven-match one-day international series had been called off.

They had since been waiting to hear the latest information supplied by the team's security advisor Reg Dickason who has been inspecting the revised venues of Chennai and Mohali.

"Yesterday (Tuesday) Hugh Morris, Managing Director England Cricket, outlined to the England players that the tour would go ahead subject to security recommendations being implemented," added the statement.

"The England Test squad will therefore practice in Abu Dhabi and will fly on to India early next week for the two Test matches in Chennai and Mohali if the security recommendations have been implemented.

"All the players have received reports from the ECB security team and also the recommendations that Reg Dickason, the team security adviser, has insisted the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) put in place."

While England are practising in Abu Dhabi, Hugh Morris and Sean Morris, of the Professional Cricketers Association (PCA), will consult with Dickason in India. The two will then fly to Abu Dhabi to brief the players.

Hugh Morris said: "The only consideration in all our discussions has been the safety and security of the team and support staff. We have been delighted by the input of the PCA and also the willingness of the BCCI to act upon our recommendations regarding security.

"While we have sought to reassure players that their safety is paramount we have not pressurised any player into making the trip against their will."

Ryan Sidebottom, who was named in England's original 15 man tour party, has been ruled out of the series with a side injury.

Stuart Broad will miss the first Test having picked up a hamstring strain in Cuttack during the fifth one day international.

He will remain in England for intensive physiotherapy and then fly out to Chennai where his fitness will be reviewed ahead of the second Test.

Earlier Wednesday, Chennai police commmissioner K. Radhakrishnan said he expected England to arrive here on Dec. 8.

However, the ECB were criticised by former England batsman Geoff Boycott who said the ruling body had shown "a lack of moral judgement" in trying to save the Tests.

"Given what has just happened in India, it is monstrous for the ECB even to be thinking about sending the team back out again," Boycott wrote in his column in The Daily Telegraph.

"It's all very well to say 'We mustn't let the terrorists win', but what about the grieving families who have lost loved ones."

Arabian Business: why we're going behind a paywall

For all the latest sports news from the UAE and Gulf countries, follow us on Twitter and Linkedin, like us on Facebook and subscribe to our YouTube page, which is updated daily.
Real news, real analysis and real insight have real value – especially at a time like this. Unlimited access ArabianBusiness.com can be unlocked for as little as $4.75 per month. Click here for more details.