As the novel coronavirus emerges as a global pandemic, humanity has come closer while maintaining a healthy social distance. All normal routines and schedules have been downsized and events are no possibility in the near future. All the major soccer leagues alongside the grand event of the Olympics 2020 to be held in Tokyo has been postponed till the pandemic fades and health facilities restore.
The cricketing fraternity has stepped up to the call and has actively postponed all matches and tournaments in the foreseeable future. While cricket fans are sad over the status of IPL, they got a bigger hit as women were locked like the whole country. England Cricket Board has recently commented on the home series that the Indian side was supposed to play with English women.
The positive side of the thing is that the English board is hopeful that the outbreak will limit curtail and the bilateral series may happen in the summers. India was scheduled to play two twenty over games and four fifty over matches. The tour, as per schedule, had to start from June 25 but in line with the disheartening rise of COVID victims and deaths in the island kingdom, the reality of having a match in later days of June looks faded.
As far as all domestic cricket games and fixtures are concerned, the English board and the authorities have postponed them till the 28th of May. However, there is growing acceptance that the dates might be pushed back. As a result, June is under clouds of corona too with lesser chances of cricket happening. The scope for rescheduling the series looks little but still very much possible. English side had to play the last match against India on 9th July after which they were supposed to face South Africa in early September.
Moreover, Indian fixtures have not yet been finalized after their outing in England. It is, henceforth, possible to hope that with canceling of super 100 to the next year, India and England might see each other in months of July or August. Further, the English board also went on to reassure that they won’t be cutting any investments which they planned for the betterment of women and girl’s cricket in their country.
As English media reports, the board has ring-fenced the amount of 20 million euros. This investment was agreed upon in 2019 only where an action plan was worked upon. This statement came after the fear that in light of the pandemic, the board might cut some cost and may pause investment. As per the action plan, a major chunk of investment was meant to build eight new semi-professional regional developmental centers with ODI matches between the new teams planned in August. But with the unexpected scenario, the domestic fixtures, and the matches are under clouds of uncertainty as ECB will be modeling plans and schedules for future.
In spite of the flexibility in the action plan, the majority investment might be made in 2021. This shall boost the morale and condition of female cricket in such times of uncertainty. ECB spokesperson, in a statement given to English media, said that the boards remain committed to advancing the female cricket in the country. He adds that domestic and international schedules have to be planned with all the stakeholders accordingly. The situation, he states, will be clear in the future when the effect of the pandemic lessens.