In what comes as a piece of good news for fans that the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) is trying to get back fans in the stadium when Virat Kohli’s side take on that of Eoin Morgan’s. India is hosting England for a full-fledged tour comprising of 4 Test matches, 5 T20Is, and 3 ODIs.
The first half of the Test series will be played at the MA Chidambaram Stadium in Chennai and the second half at the newly built 110,000-seater Sardar Patel Stadium in Ahmedabad. The 5-match T20I series is also slated for Ahmedabad from 12th March followed by the ODI series in Pune.
Joe Root is the captain of the Three Lions in Test cricket, while Eoin Morgan, who led England to their maiden 50-over World Cup title a couple of years ago, will lead the visitors in white-ball matches.
Speaking to ANI, a BCCI official in the know of developments expressed the keenness of the board to fill half of the stadium with fans for the T20I series. But the government will have the final say in the decision.
“We are trying to open the stadium for fans to witness what awaits to be a thrilling T20I series between India and England. While we are yet to decide on the numbers, the idea is to get close to 50 percent of the seats filled. But the final decision lies with the government. Safety is a priority even as we adapt to the new normal,” the official said to ANI.
India-England first two tests at Chennai to be played behind closed doors
While the BCCI is seeking permission to allow spectators in Ahmedabad, the Tamil Nadu Cricket Association (TNCA) has taken the decision that no tickets would be put on sale and the first two Tests will not host any crowd.
In the circular the TNCA secretary, RS Ramasaamy has notified its members about the same and that the decision has been taken in view of the existing situation of the COVID-19 pandemic in Tamil Nadu.
“In view of the prevailing Covid-19 pandemic, BCCI has decided not to take any kind of risk with the safety of the players during the forthcoming India-England Test series.
“The players, officials will be undergoing strict quarantine and several rounds of COVID-19 tests before entering the bio-bubble. As per BCCI directive, the first two Tests between February 5-17 being held at MA Chidambaram Stadium will take place behind closed doors. TNCA will not be issuing tickets or sub-committee badges,” Ramaswamy wrote as quoted by ANI.
Meanwhile, the squad for the first two Tests for both the teams has been announced and the players will undergo quarantine and a thorough round of testing before entering the bio-bubble.