'India did not respect the series. They did not respect Test cricket either': Former English cricketer Paul Newman after cancelled 5th Test(AP)
'India did not respect the series. They did not respect Test cricket either': Former English cricketer Paul Newman after cancelled 5th Test(AP)

'India did not respect the series. Did not respect Test cricket either': Former English cricketer on cancelled 5th Test

  • The former English cricketer said the Indian cricketers did not want to take the field because they did not want to risk missing the resumption of IPL on September 19 in Dubai.
UPDATED ON SEP 14, 2021 12:24 PM IST

Former English cricketer Paul Newman did not shy away from firing shots at the IPL, Indian cricketers and the BCCI after the fifth Test against England in Manchester was cancelled due to Covid-19 fears in the Indian camp. India's assistant physio Yogesh Parmar tested positive for Covid-19 on the eve of the series-decider sending tremors down the Indian dressing room and ultimately leading to the cancellation of the match.

Newman, however, said the Indian cricketers did not want to take the field because they did not want to risk missing the resumption of IPL on September 19 in Dubai.

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"There is no way this series decider would have been called off on the morning of the first day had the majority of India’s players not been flying to Dubai next Wednesday for the resumption of the richest tournament in cricket.

"No India player with an IPL contract wanted to risk playing in this Test, then testing positive and being forced to stay in England for another 10 days, so missing the restart of the tournament in the UAE on September 19," Newman, who has played 135 first-class matches and 177 List A games, wrote in his column for the Daily Mail.

"The positive PCR test of Yogesh Parmar was the trigger India’s players needed to up sticks and get out of here as soon as possible even after they had all returned negative tests themselves en masse on Thursday evening.

"There really should have been no reason why they could not play on once those test results were returned. That is the criterion that has governed every game this season as cricket continues to navigate the complex Covid world. Why should that change now?

"India did not respect this series in pulling out yesterday and they did not respect Test cricket either in flouting Covid guidelines ahead of the fourth Test," he added.

The former seamer also blamed India head coach Ravi Shastri's book launch event ahead of the fourth Test in London.

"This whole outbreak in their camp could well have been started by the presence of Shastri along with captain Virat Kohli and several players and staff at a book launch at a London hotel attended by more than 150 people two days before the Oval Test.

"It was a breach of protocols that privately angered those at the ECB who have done so much to keep the show on the road in the last 18 months, not least with three Tests at Old Trafford last year that salvaged millions of pounds of revenue for the game. What a way for Lancashire to be rewarded for all they did then," he said.

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