Cricket West Indies president Ricky Skerritt has provided Bangladesh hope that they are going to be touring the country in January 2021 with the “best to be had” West Indies team, also hinting that the three-Test series might be reduced to two keeping the players’ requirements in brain.
According to the ICC’s Future Tours Programme, the tour used to be slotted for January 2021 featuring three Tests, three ODIs and two T20Is, with the Tests a part of the World Test Championship. By the point this month ends, Bangladesh will be some of the few Full Member teams to have not played international cricket since March.
“There was an option to minimize from three to two Tests but it’s not finalised yet,” Skerritt told the Dhaka-based Maasranga TV. “It’s going to be finalised inside the following few days. The problem is [that] we need to look at it from all perspectives, that of Covid-19, scheduling and cost. At the present time, the pressures that Covid has brought to world cricket are remarkable when it comes to revenue. We need to come to Bangladesh because we respect the relationship and the bilateral agreements that we have got.
“I just need to assure you that we will be able to all the time send the most productive to be had team to any tour that we undertake, including Bangladesh. We imagine a tour to Bangladesh is all the time a challenging tour because it is an surroundings that’s very different to our own conditions. But we have all the time done polite in Bangladesh. Our players enjoy playing against Bangladesh. These days we are slightly evenly matched and it is all the time a good series between West Indies and Bangladesh. We are doing everything we will to take part in tours out of the country and at home. The Covid-19 pandemic is making it extremely difficult to execute our plans.”
On Wednesday, the BCB chief executive Nizamuddin Chowdhury said in a press briefing that CWI had requested one fewer Test because of the length of the bio-bubble in Bangladesh.
“It isn’t last yet. The West Indies cricket board has requested us, as staying within bio-bubble for a very long time is hard for players,” Chowdhury had said. “They requested to believe whether it is conceivable to shorten the duration of the series. In that case, one of the crucial options is to minimize one Test match. We are still discussing the issues, nothing is finalised yet.”
Skerritt also said they need to make certain that the BCB followed the recognised worldwide health protocols – that the West Indies team had experienced in England – after they became the first international cricket team to tour all the way through the pandemic.
“We need to make sure that the protocols established in Bangladesh meet the requirement that we have got established so far in the quite a lot of tours we have been on,” Skerritt said. “There are case studies to benchmark from. This isn’t going to be the first in a foreign country tour. As you realize, we did the first in a foreign country tour to England.
“Sure standards were set, sure learnings were achieved, and I think once Bangladesh can meet those standards, I do not believe there’s going to be any major problem. We just have to make sure in our own way that the situation will be protected for all concerned.”
The BCB has so far held one domestic tournament, the President’s Cup, in which they managed to retain three teams in a bio-bubble, allowing them only to travel between the hotel and the Shere Bangla National Stadium. From Tuesday, they’re going to be hosting the five-team Bangabandhu T20 Cup, which will even have a BCB-sponsored bio-bubble.