The West Indies men’s cricket team’s Test series against Bangladesh in January 2021 could be reduced to two matches from three-game rubber keeping in mind the requirements of the players amid coronavirus crises.
West Indies and Bangladesh are slated to play three Tests, as many One-Day Internationals (ODIs) and two-match T20Is early next year as per the International Cricket Council (ICC) Future Tours Programme. The matches between the two sides in the longest format of the game are part of the inaugural edition of the ICC World Test Championship.
Talking about the Test series, Cricket West Indies (CWI) president Ricky Skerritt hinted that the two sides could play just two matches instead of three, while adding that the national side will be touring Bangladesh with the ‘best available’ slot.
“There has been an option to reduce from three to two Tests but it is not finalised yet. It will be finalised within the next few days. The problem is [that] we have to look at it from all perspectives, that of Covid-19, scheduling and cost. These days, the pressures that Covid has brought to world cricket are significant in terms of revenue. We want to come to Bangladesh because we respect the relationship and the bilateral agreements that we have,” ESPNcricinfo quoted Skerritt as saying.
“I just want to assure you that we will always send the best available team to any tour that we undertake, including Bangladesh. We believe a tour to Bangladesh is always a challenging tour because it is an environment that’s very different to our own conditions. But we have always done well in Bangladesh. Our players enjoy playing against Bangladesh. At the moment we are fairly evenly matched and it is always a good series between West Indies and Bangladesh,” he added.
Skerritt further said that the Cricket West Indies is hoping that their Bangladesh counterpart follow all the necessary health protocols that their national side had experienced in England.
“We want to be sure that the protocols established in Bangladesh meet the requirement that we have established so far in the various tours we have been on.There are case studies to benchmark from. This is not going to be the first overseas tour. As you know, we did the first overseas tour to England,” he said.
Earlier, Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB) chief executive Nizamuddin Chowdhury had also confirmed that CWI had asked for one fewer Test because of the length of the bio-bubble in Bangladesh.
The Caribbean side is currently in New Zealand for the three-match T20I series and two Tests, beginning Friday at Eden Park.