Former England captain Alastair Cook has said that it is pretty much impossible for the three-match One-day International series between hosts South Africa and England to go ahead given the back-to-back postponement of the first ODI due to a surge in Covid cases.
The ODI series between South Africa and England was originally slated to kickstart on Friday, 4th December, at Newlands in Cape Town but the game was called off after one unnamed Proteas player and two members of their support-staff returned positive for the virus.
The first match of the series was scheduled for Sunday at Boland Park in Paarl after the entire South African squad returned negative for the deadly contagion following the tests on Saturday.
However, with two members of the hotel staff testing positive, the English contingent was also tested, which led to an unnamed cricketer from the touring party returning ‘unconfirmed negative’. The entire England squad is now self-isolating in their respective team-hotels.
While the first match had to be called-off, the next two games are scheduled for Monday and Wednesday but Alastair Cook feels that it is pretty much impossible that the series will go ahead.
“I would be very surprised if this series continues. I’d imagine that the players will want to come home,” Alastair Cook said on BBC 5 Radio Live.
England are set to tour Sri Lanka for a Test series in January but Cook questioned whether the players would be willing to travel to the island nation, given the fact that one positive test can put an end to the entire tour.
”Will the players want to go to Sri Lanka? Another outbreak would mean doing all the hard work, going out there, and still not playing anyway if one Covid breach brings the whole thing down,” Alastair Cook asked.
”That will be another question. Is it worth waiting for the vaccine when things can hopefully get back to normal?” he questioned.
Cook also went on to laud the ECB for the seamless manner in which the home summer took place amid all the necessary bio-security protocols.
“It was amazing this summer that nothing happened and every game happened. The ECB (England and Wales Cricket Board) have to get a lot of credit for organising it in that way. At times you probably thought the measures were a bit over the top, but they were all worth it to get all the games on.” Cook said.