'Michael Holding told me that BCCI didn't want the last Test': Ex-India spinner reveals details of 5th Test cancellation

  • More details have emerged as to what led to the cancellation of the fifth Test between India and England in Manchester. 
Former West Indies fast bowler Michael Holding. (Getty)
Former West Indies fast bowler Michael Holding. (Getty)
Updated on Sep 15, 2021 08:58 PM IST
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By, New Delhi

Several theories have popped up following the cancellation of the 5th Test between India and England in Manchester. BCCI chief Sourav Ganguly made it clear that the reason Indian players were reluctant in taking the field for the series-deciding Test was due to Covid-19 fears as assistant physio Yogesh Parmar had tested positive, while many from the English media believe Indian players prioritised the IPL over Test cricket.

However, former India left-arm spinner Dilip Doshi has revealed fascinating details about the cancellation of the Manchester Test, saying that in an interaction with Michael Holding, the former West Indies fast bowler had informed him that the BCCI was not interested in playing the fifth and final Test of the series.

"I was speaking to a dear friend of mine Michael Holding earlier today and he mentioned to me that the Indian Cricket board did not want the last Test. So, their original suggestion was that the tour should end after the Oval Test, leaving enough time between IPL and the last Test in England. Giving a gap of 15 days because of the quarantine period in between, but I believe ECB did not want that and they may have insisted on the fifth Test." Doshi, 73, said on India Ahead news.

Doshi, who was present at the book launch of India coach Ravi Shastri's book 'Stargazing', gave insights about the function. Certain section is pointing fingers at coach Shastri for hosting a book launch and contracting the virus, as barely days after the event, the coach tested positive. Whether that is true is be known but Doshi did admit that none of the Indian players were wearing a mask at the event.

"I was present at the book launch. A lot of dignitaries, and Team India was present there for a short while and none of them was wearing a mask. Whether the society has to wear a mask, whether it is mandatory or not is decided by the politicians," Doshi said.

"Prime Minister Boris Johnson decided that England was safe enough because of the double vaccinated program and a lot of people have been vaccinated here therefore immunity is apparently high and so it was then the society is open to all avenues and they did that.

"So, there are two ways of looking at it. That's one aspect of life but as a touring team when you are here on a mission then I would expect that every time the Indian team or the Indian squad are offering themselves in public where there is little more crowd, if I were then I would definitely be wearing a mask, not because I don't trust others but I am barring myself from getting infected."

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