The tour of India ‘A’ to England later this summer which was supposed to see them face the England Lions. Moreover, India ‘A’ were also scheduled to play two warm-up matches against India in the lead up to India’s five-match Test series in England has now been postponed. The BCCI will now send an enlarged squad for the Indian team to “prepare for, and use during” their five-match Test series against England.
“India’s warm-up schedule will now comprise two intra-squad four-day matches, which will replace the two previously planned four-day fixtures between India Men and India A in July,” the ECB stated in a release.
The change has been made keeping the prevailing COVID-19 situation and the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) is keen on focusing on providing the safest conditions possible for every international team that will be travelling to the United Kingdom (UK) throughout the summer.
New Zealand are scheduled to play two Test matches against England ahead of their World Test Championship (WTC) final. Meanwhile, Sri Lanka and Pakistan are due to tour for white-ball series as well. Each of the international sides were supposed to play warm-up matches against County sides. However, that has now been called off and each team will play intra-squad games.
“Following further discussions with the boards of New Zealand, Sri Lanka and Pakistan it has been agreed to cancel their scheduled men’s tour matches against first-class counties. New Zealand, Sri Lanka and Pakistan’s men’s teams will instead play intra-squad matches to allow them suitable preparation for their international fixtures this summer,” the ECB statement further said.
After India A’s tour was postponed, Tom Harrison who is the ECB chief executive stated that the India A will be welcomed in the country at a later date once the restrictions have eased. “We look forward to welcoming a men’s India A tour at a later date after this summer and when restrictions have eased. It will provide a valuable opportunity for players from both countries to experience high-quality cricket and to showcase the talent within our England Lions team and first-class counties,” the ECB chief executive Tom Harrison was quoted saying.
Meanwhile, the Indian team will fly out to the United Kingdom soon after the completion of the IPL 2021 final. They are scheduled to face New Zealand in the WTC final which starts on the 18th of June in Southampton. Virat Kohli and co are likely to stay back in the UK after the WTC final and the Test series against England kickstarts on the 4th of August at Trent Bridge in Nottingham.