Uncertainty thickens over Sri Lanka tour

Staff Correspondent | Published: 22:05, May 13,2020


The Bangladesh cricket team’s tour of Sri Lanka was thrown into more uncertainty after the International Cricket Council decided to postpone July’s ICC Women’s World Cup Qualifier in the same country.

The Tigers were supposed to play a three-Test series against the islanders as part of the ICC Test championship in July and August and both the boards were scheduled to take a final call on the series on May 15.

The chance of the series taking place in the previously slotted time was already slim due to the COVID-19 situation but now it has gotten even slimmer after the ICC’s call to indefinitely defer the qualifiers tournament, which was scheduled to take place from July 3-19.

The chief executive officer of the Bangladesh Cricket Board Nizamuddin Chowdhury on Wednesday said that they were in constant contact with their Sri Lankan counterparts, but as Sri Lanka Cricket was the host and it had the final call.

‘ICC events are under ICC’s jurisdiction. It’s a bilateral series and the host board is the final shot caller. So we are doing what is possible from our end,’ the CEO told New Age.

The cricketers are now staying at home as per the government directive, and have been out of competitive cricket for close to two months. The foreign coaches and trainers of the national team were also in their respective country.

In this scenario, if the SLC give a positive response, the BCB would have to scramble to get the players back in shape for competitive cricket, try and bring back the foreign support staff and get the required permission from the government and other authorities.

The BCB chief executive said the board will begin this process only after they get green light from the SLC and other concerned authorities.

‘We will consider everything like preparation, travel arrangements, travel restrictions etc. But only after we receive green signal from all the concerned authorities. Only then we will proceed,’ he said.

In an interview with the Sydney Morning Herald on May 8, Arun Dhumal, treasurer of Board of Control for Cricket in India, said that the players could stay in quarantine for two weeks after traveling to another country to carry on international cricket during the coronavirus pandemic.

Nizamuddin, however, termed the statement as a personal opinion and said the BCB would not accept any such proposal right away without the government’s permission.

‘What he said might be his personal opinion, not BCCI’s opinion. As a person, one can suggest many things. But when it’s an institutional or official statement, only then we might consider it as an option.

‘It’s not likely that we will agree the moment we receive this type of a proposal. We have to take permission from the government,’ he said.

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