England is all set to be the first epicenter of international cricket amidst novel coronavirus pandemic. The England and Wales Cricket Board will host Pakistan following the proposed home series against the West Indies in July.
The Pakistan Cricket Board and ECB have agreed to a bilateral Test series in August this year. The decision was taken by the two cricket bodies during a teleconference last week.
The first Test has been tentatively planned to start from August 5. The PCB has agreed to send the team to England for a three-Test series. The tour will also have as many T20 International games.
The 25-strong Pakistan national cricket team will leave for England in the first week of July. A formal announcement will be made soon. The squad, to be sent via chartered flights, will have to spent two weeks in quarantine on arrival in England.
Manchester and Southampton will be the likely venues for the Test series. ECB is expected to add one more venue for the home games against Pakistan.
PCB CEO Wasim Khan, meanwhile, has also announced that the Pakistan national team players will be provided with a special insurance cover. Slated to start from July, the special cover will come into effect with the tour of England. No player, however, will be insisted to go on the tour against his wishes.
ECB is planning to host the West Indies for a three-Test series in July. The Caribbeans were originally scheduled to play in England from June 4, but the series was postponed in wake of the Covid-19 pandemic. England has been among the top five most affected nations by novel coronavirus, which still has no anti-dose. There have been around 2.5 lakh confirmed Covid-19 cases in England.
The ECB has also confirmed that England men’s squad will return to individual skills-based training from next week. Men’s Elite Performance Programme from Wednesday will implement an individualised training programme for a number of bowlers, who are centrally contracted and invited through the county system. As the bowlers reach their desired levels to bowl, batsmen and wicketkeepers will start their respective training programmes on an individual basis.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson on Tuesday has published a new 50-roadmap to lift the nationwide lockdown. The new rules permit some of the sports to be played.