GCA says decision taken “due to increasing number of” Covid cases
The remaining three T20Is between India and England in Ahmedabad will be played behind closed doors “due to increasing number of Corona cases”. The Gujarat Cricket Association (GCA) will refund the spectators who had purchased tickets for the games.
“Due to rise in number of Corona cases, we at GCA have decided in consultation with BCCI, the matches will be played (behind) closed doors and not allow the spectators in the ground during T20 internationals to be played between India and England at Ahmedabad,” GCA vice-president Dhanraj Nathwani said in a press release. “We will form the policy for refund of money to the spectators, who have already purchased the tickets for these three T20s. Those who have received complimentary tickets are requested not to visit the stadium.”
All five T20Is of the series are being played at the refurbished stadium at Motera, Ahmedabad and the first two games saw crowds of 67,200 and 66,352 respectively. The ground has a capacity of close to 130,000 and the GCA allowed 50% of crowd in the first two games.
“Aside from meaning there will be considerably less noise in the stadium it doesn’t materially affect us as we remain in our bubble and even when crowds were in attendance we never came into contact with any of them, and the ball was sanitised whenever it was hit into the stands,” an ECB spokesperson said.
The near-two-month-long tour began with the first two Tests in Chennai before the teams moved to Ahmedabad for the remaining two Tests and the T20I series. Crowds were allowed in the stadium from the second Test onwards with 50% capacity. The three-match ODI series will be played in Pune on March 23, 26 and 28 but there is no confirmation yet on whether spectators will be allowed there or not, given the rising Covid-19 cases in Maharashtra.
The series is currently level 1-1 and the remaining three matches will be played on March 16, 18 and 20.
More to follow…