The England Cricket Board on Wednesday recommended that all forms of recreational cricket be suspended following the United Kingdom government’s latest advice on social distancing. There have been 2,626 confirmed cases of the coronavirus in Britain, out of which the latest figure for deaths is 71.

“Following the Government’s latest advice around social distancing, it is with sadness and reluctance that we recommend that all forms of recreational cricket are for now suspended,” the ECB said in a statement.

“It will be critical that any decisions we do make are medically-led. And we will continue to work with Government and their advisors to ensure we are informed by science in our decision making,” the statement further read.

With the 2020 season due to start next month, England are set to play West Indies in a three-Test series starting on June 4.

After this decision, any cricket related training, pre-season friendlies and any associated cricket activity would not take place.

“Over the coming weeks we will work with the game to understand what support is required across the cricket community, particularly local clubs and leagues – who will have such a huge role to play in our nation’s response to coming out of this situation,” the ECB further added.

Earlier this month, England had postponed the Test series against Sri Lanka after discussions with Sri Lanka Cricket due to the coronavirus pandemic worsening globally.

Meanwhile, according to WHO estimates, the novel coronavirus or COVID-19 has so far claimed the lives of almost 8,000 lives and infected close to 2,00,000 people globally.