India and England plan five-Test cricket series

January 1st, 2009 - 8:04 pm ICT by IANS  

London, Jan 1 (IANS) India and England cricket boards are about to ink a deal for a five-Test series. In the past 30 years, the series between the two countries have been for just three Tests and the one last month in India was of only two. Increasing the number to five is a result of the much closer relationship between the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) and the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) following England’s decision to return to play Test matches in Chennai and Mohali.

England will reap the benefits of their decision to return to India following the Mumbai terrorist attacks, according to a report in The Guardian.

But the payback also follows intense negotiations between Giles Clarke, the chairman of the ECB, David Collier, the chief executive, and the BCCI’s new president Shashank Manohar as well as its secretary, N. Srinivasan.

“First of all it was absolutely vital that we returned to India after what happened in Mumbai. We promised India that a team would go back, if possible the same team that was originally selected, but if not a bloody good team,” the report quoted an ECB official as saying.

The ECB believes it is better placed than the Australian board to forge a lucrative partnership with the the BCCI, which regards relations between the countries as “at its best phase ever”.

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