The fifth Test between India and England which was scheduled to be played at Manchester was cancelled last Friday, still it one of the raging topics in the world of cricket now. An eleventh hour decision to cancel the Test shocked many and since then several ex-cricketers and pundits have opined on the decision that put an end to a riveting India-England series. The latest to join the bandwagon is former India cricketer VVS Laxman.
The 46-year-old said that it is unfair to “play the blame game” as the situation wasn’t under anyone’s control.
“It was an abrupt, somewhat disappointing end to what had been a cracking series but given the circumstances in which the final Test at Old Trafford was cancelled, it’s unfair to point fingers or play the blame game," wrote Laxman in his column for Times of India.
“More than a year and a half since the pandemic, the world is still far from a safe place. It might be tempting for many to see the Indian team as the villain of the piece, but I can say from our IPL experiences this summer that once any member of the team that you have been in close contact with tests positive, it is impossible not to be apprehensive, indeed fearful,” he added.
Laxman, who was once part of India’s Fabulous Five also said that the ICC should award the series victory to India as they were leading 2-1 up until the point of cancellation.
The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) has agreed to play an additional Test along with the white-ball series when India tours England in 2022.
“To take the field in that mental state is far from ideal. So is the potential risk of endangering others on the park, be it your teammates, the officials or the opponents. Against that backdrop, I think the cancellation of the Test was the right call, though I feel deeply for the fans who had invested so much time, money and emotion in the contest. I hope the ICC sees the situation for what it is and awards the series 2-1 to India, particularly with the BCCI having offered to play a Test during their white-ball tour of England next year,” said Laxman.