England denies canceling India tour, to take decision in next 24 hours

November 27th, 2008 - 3:05 pm ICT by ANI  

London, Nov 27 (ANI): Disputing news reports that England had decided to call off rest of the cricket series against India (two ODIs and two Tests) following the Mumbai terror strikes, sources close to the visiting team have said that they have not taken any such decision so far, and that they were in constant touch with the BCCI discussing security issues.

Hugh Morris, the ECB’’s managing director of England cricket, said that a final decision whether to cancel the tour or continue with it, would be taken in the next 24 hours.

I have briefed the England players and management on the situation as well as liaising closely with the ECB chairman and chief executive and the players” representatives. The events of last night were deeply distressing and the situation is still unfolding. We are urgently seeking information from expert sources regarding last night’’s attacks and will continue to hold further discussions with our colleagues from the BCCI over the next 24 hours, The Telegraph quoted Morris as saying.

According to the paper, the England team will not travel to Guwahati this afternoon as scheduled and will stay put in Bhubaneswar overnight till further discussions with the Board of Control for Cricket (BCCI) in India.

Hugh Morris further said: On behalf of the Board and the England team, we would like to express our condolences to the families and friends of those people who were killed or injured in last night’’s attacks. The safety and security of the England team is of the utmost importance to ECB. We have reviewed all our security arrangements in the light of these attacks and will be taking all necessary steps to ensure the safety and security of the team. This morning I held initial discussions with the Hony Secy of BCCI, N Srinivasan, as well as representatives from the Indian team management at the team hotel in Bhubaneswar.

It had initially been reported that England would return home in wake of the attacks. A foreign news agency had quoted an official source in Cuttack as saying last night: They are packing their bags, they are going home.

As yet it remains unclear whether England will participate in the two-Test series which is scheduled to start in Ahmedabad on Dec 11. The second Test is due to be played in Mumbai from Dec 19. (ANI)

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