The fifth and final Test match between England and India scheduled to take place at Old Trafford in Manchester on Friday (10 September) has been called off due to COVID-19 threat. Post the development, England Cricket Board released a statement and said that India had forfeited the match. In case of the forfeit, England will be declared winners and the series will stand at 2-2. However, BCCI vice-president Rajiv Shukla has cleared that India has not forfeited the match and negotiations are on between BCCI and ECB to solve the matter.
“After wide consultations between BCCI president, BCCI secretary, Treasurer, me and joint secretary, along with ECB chairman and CEO and in consultations with players, captain, senior players it was decided to call off this Test match which was slated in Manchester,” Shukla told India TV.
“And other things you know, other negations with ECB will continue in order to resolve the whole issue amicably. There is no question of forfeiting the match, it has been only called off,” he added.
The BCCI vice-president was also asked if the match will be played in the future to which he replied, “Those negations are taking place.”
The match was called off after India assistant physio Yogesh Parmar tested positive for COVID-19. This was days after Ravi Shastri, Bharat Arun, R Sridhar and Nitin Patel returned positive results. It was reported that few Indian players were not in favour of playing the game as they feared further spread of COVID-19. There were talks about the match getting postponed by two days but that was not an option with the second leg of IPL not far away.