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BCCI wanted 5th Test to be played as scheduled, finger-pointing at IPL unfair: ECB CEO Tom Harrison

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BCCI wanted 5th Test to be played as scheduled, finger-pointing at IPL unfair: ECB CEO Tom Harrison

The England & Wales Cricket Board (ECB) chief executive Tom Harrison has firmly denied rumours that the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2021 could have been one of the reasons why the fifth and final Test between England and India was canceled after the visiting camp was hit by Covid-19 on the eve of the match.

Harrison said that the ECB shares a strong relationship with the BCCI and the Indian cricket board wanted the Manchester Test to go on as scheduled. ECB official further asserted that this was “not an outbreak” among India’s players “but a perception of what might happen to post the physio testing positive”.

The Manchester Test was called off hours before the scheduled start of play on September 10 due to Covid-19 fears in the Indian camp after their assistant physio Yogesh Parmar tested positive for the virus on Thursday.

All India players returned negative results in the first round of RT-PCR tests but apprehension about possible infections led to the cancellation of the Test. A BCCI statement later said that there has been an offer made to reschedule the match.

Read More | IND vs ENG: ‘2-2 or 2-1 is not for ECB to decide; if match doesn’t take place, let ICC intervence’

Harrison further said that a rescheduled match would be a standalone Test rather than a continuation of this series.

“Hopefully we can get this Test on some other time, but it won’t be the same as it having the conclusion after four brilliant matches. The BCCI, this India team and their captain want to make their mark in Test cricket. I don’t think the IPL should worry people who feel there is an agenda is at place here,” ECB chief executive Tom Harrison was quoted as saying by BBC.

“I was on the phone all night. Once those fears creep in they can be very hard to shift. There are no winners in this one.100% of the BCCI wanted to get this game on. There is a strong relationship between the ECB and BCCI. We will definitely come through this, probably even stronger than we went in.”

“The outcome of this game is not one for today. Thoughts will turn to that soon. It is a decision for the ICC in the context of the World Test Championship. It’s not something that concerns us unduly. We expect the people in place to make those decisions will make them,” Harrison added.

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