The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) president Sourav Ganguly recently revealed the state of mind of Indian players ahead of the Manchester Test. He explained that Physio Yogesh Parmar was in close contact with most of the players. Hence, after he returned a positive result for Covid-19, it understandably shook the players.
The players were scared that they might have contracted the deadly virus and then were not comfortable staying in that bubble anymore. After understanding the situation of the players, BCCI had discussions with the ECB, and eventually, the Manchester Test got canceled.
Speaking to The Telegraph, Sourav Ganguly opened up about the events that unfolded in the Team India camp in the lead-up to the fifth Test. Sourav Ganguly said:
"The players refused to play but you can’t blame them. Physio Yogesh Parmar was such a close contact of the players. Being the only one available after Nitin Patel isolated himself, he mixed freely with the players and even performed their Covid-19 tests. He also used to give them a massage, he was part of their everyday lives."
"The players were devastated when they came to know that he had tested positive for Covid-19. They feared they must have contracted the disease and were dead scared. It’s not easy staying in a bubble. Of course, you have to respect their feelings."
Ganguly empathized with the situation of the Indian players and backed their decision. All the players have already left the UK and reached their next destination.
Whenever it’s held next year, it should be a one-off match since it cannot be a continuation of the series anymore: Sourav Ganguly
Sourav Ganguly also clarified that the canceled Test would be a one-off match whenever it's rescheduled and can't be part of the series. When asked about the future of the series and that of the Old Trafford Test, Ganguly said:
"The Old Trafford Test has been cancelled. They have incurred a lot of losses and it’s not going to be easy on the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB). Let things settle down a bit, then we can discuss and decide. Whenever it’s held next year, it should be a one-off match since it cannot be a continuation of the series any more."
We might get a clear picture of the status of the series and the fate of the Old Trafford Test in the coming weeks after deliberations between the BCCI and ECB.