Former Pakistan captain and their current head coach-cum-national selector Misbah Ul Haq has called for cricket to resume, even if it is behind closed doors, provided all the prevention cures are met by the authorities.
Misbah reckoned that the absence of cricket taking and the constant onslaught of news with regards to COVID-19 can be depressing and the game should restart even if it means playing in empty stadiums.
Recently there have been reports that England & Wales Cricket Board [ECB] are planning to stage two back-to-back Test series against West Indies and Pakistan in the bio-secure environment at the Ageas Bowl and Old Trafford.
“It is not an ideal situation for anyone because of this coronavirus pandemic and obviously the health and well being of everyone should be our top priority. But if matches can be held even in empty stadiums with the right safety barriers … I would have no problems,” Misbah Ul Haq told Press Trust of India [PTI].
“Everyone is confined and I just think that if even if it can be made possible to bring some live cricket action to people sitting at home it would do them a lot of good,” Misbah said.
He added: “It becomes depressing when you have nothing to do and hear about mostly Covid-19 news all the time. In this situation if sports can be resumed and if cricket can be started at least it will allow the people to watch cricket at home.”
Misbah Ul Haq also cautioned cricket boards to adhere to all the safety measures and guidelines by their government
The German Bundesliga is set to kickstart from March 16 but Misbah said that while it is good news, they too had to take clearance from their respective government, something that cricket boards will also have to adhere to.
“But even they first got clearance from their government. Cricket boards also will have to do that,” Misbah Ul Haq said.
Misbah Ul Haq, who took over the job of coach and selector last September also talked about players’ fitness, adding that as professionals, it is the duty of the individual to take care of their fitness.
“I told them as cricket professionals it is their individual responsibility to take care of themselves and their fitness. Because they can be called on duty anytime,” he added.
There has been no competitive cricket due to coronavirus since March and it will be interesting to see how things pan out in the upcoming days.