As the dust settles and debates die down around the much-talked-about fifth and final Test between India and England at Old Trafford – England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) in all likelihood would be writing to the ICC’s Dispute Resolution Committee (DRC) for deciding the fate of cancelled Test. In all likelihood, the England board has sent a formal application to the ICC asking them to start the adjudication process with the hope of a swift decision.
After a COVID-19 outbreak in the Indian cricket team camp, senior players expressed their apprehensions to both BCCI and ECB on playing and the Test was called off with India leading 2-1 after four Tests.
While sources in the ICC said that they aren’t aware of ECB having already written to the ICC on the matter but leading website Cricbuzz has reported that the host cricket board has already done so since they are staring at a loss of GBP 40 million, most of it won’t be covered if COVID-19 is the reason for cancellation of the game.
It is understood that ECB will press for a forfeiture of the fifth Test which would allow them to claim the compensation from the insurance company. “Look, the one-off Test that BCCI has proposed will be standalone as Tom Harrison has said. Which means that it is not a part of this series.
“Therefore if ICC decides that Indian cricket team which twice tested negative in RT-PCR was “unable to field” the team due to COVID-19, then it will be acceptable non-compliance,” a source in the know of things said.
However, if it is ruled out in favour of India, ECB stands to incur huge losses as most of the 40 million GBP is not covered under COVID-19 insurance.
Therefore, if ECB can suitably prove that it was a case of forfeiture and the series is adjudicated as 2-2, then they have sufficient grounds to claim for compensation.
The Indian cricketers have already left UK and most of them have touched base in the UAE with their respective IPL franchises.
It goes without saying that BCCI’s apprehension was IPL schedule going haywire in case any of the top players tested positive during the course of the now cancelled Test.
The Indian players since assistant physio Yogesh Parmar’s positive report have had two negative RT-PCR tests following which they left the country.