England Test series in Sri Lanka postponed due to coronavirus pandemic

England’s two-Test series in Sri Lanka has been postponed as a precautionary measure against the spread of coronavirus.

Joe Root’s side were due to contest the opening Test in Galle on Thursday, with the second Test due to take place in Colombo from March 27.

In a statement, the ECB confirmed: “Due to the Covid-19 pandemic worsening globally, and after discussions with Sri Lanka Cricket, we have today made the decision to return our players to the UK and postpone the forthcoming Test series between Sri Lanka and England.

“At this time, the physical and mental well-being of our players and support teams is paramount. We will now look to bring them home to their families as soon as possible. These are completely unprecedented times, and decisions like this go beyond cricket.

“We would like to thank our colleagues at Sri Lanka Cricket for their outstanding support and assistance throughout this situation. We look forward to returning to Sri Lanka in the very near future to fulfil this important Test series.”

I’m no medic .. commentary for me .. but surely we should be looking after our vulnerable folk , not saying this virus will only affect those that are old, weak or ill

The decision comes following talks throughout the week between the ECB and the Sri Lankan and British High Commissions.

As recently as Thursday the ECB had said it hoped that the series would go ahead, but warned of a “highly evolving situation” and advised fans planning to travel to Sri Lanka to consult government advice before doing so.

This followed the ECB’s decision to limit player interaction with supporters – including selfies and autographs – and restrict their public appearances while on tour.

The postponement came within an hour of news that the start of the Indian Premier League is to be delayed from March 29 until April 15 as a precautionary measure in response to the pandemic, while the Marylebone Cricket Club has confirmed that the annual Champion County Match will no longer take place.

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