India vs England: ODI series in Pune to be played behind closed doors amid COVID scare

Not in some good news for cricket fans, the ODI series between India and England in Pune will be played behind closed doors
India vs England: ODI series in Pune to be played behind closed doors amid COVID scare
Maharashtra Cricket Association Stadium, PuneImage source: Sakal Media Group

Pune: The Maharashtra government on Saturday gave green signal to conduct three match ODI series between India and England at the Maharashtra Cricket Association Stadium (MCA) in Pune.

But not in some good news for cricket fans, the matches in Pune will be played behind closed doors amid rise in the spread of COVID-19 infection.

The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) was planning to move the series venue from Pune due to surge in infection.

Vikas Kakatkar, President, MCA and, Milind Navrekar, Governing Council Manager met Maharashtra Chief Minister Uddhav Thackeray and Tourism Minister Aditya Thackeray on Saturday. After the meeting, it was decided that permission will be given to host the ODIs in the city but without spectators in Pune.

A statement issued by MCA read, “Keeping the seriousness of the current spike in COVID cases in Maharashtra, after inputs from the Hon’ble Chief Minister, it was decided that permission will be granted for these matches without spectators."

It further read, “The Chief Minister requested the President of the Maharashtra Cricket Association to take all the necessary precautions regarding players and other officials. With this, the uncertainty about holding these three ODI matches has ended and the association can start preparatory works like obtaining various permissions.”

Earlier this month, the cricket board had permitted 50 per cent fans to attend the Test matches in Chennai and Ahmedabad. India and England are scheduled to play a three-match ODI series from March 23 to 28.

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