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P
Pa
July 4, 2020

ECB calls for recreational cricket return

Sports

P
Pa
July 4, 2020

LONDON: While tennis has been allowed to resume by the government following the peak of the coronavirus pandemic, thousands of village cricketers are still inactive as they wait for the green light.

Prime Minister Boris Johnson has hinted that recreational cricket is not yet safe to be played due to issues surrounding communal teas and dressing rooms, but the governing body disputes that and says it has provided protocols on how the game can be restarted.

“The ECB believes that cricket is a non-contact sport, with very low risks of exposure, and that it can be played as safely as many other activities being currently permitted,” it said in a statement.

“The detailed submission we have shared with the Department For Digital, Culture, Media and Sport includes advice on how we can stage cricket safely and mitigate all potential risks.

“We believe this advice - allied with strict hygiene measures - means recreational cricket should be viewed as safe by the UK Government, which would be welcome news to our nation’s recreational cricketers.”

Johnson had previously described the cricket ball as a “vector of disease” but said the dangers were more widespread. “There are reasons. These debates have gone round and round,” he said on LBC Radio.

“There are various other considerations. The longer answer, which I think probably (chief medical officer) Chris Whitty would give if he were here about cricket, the risk is not so much the ball, although that may be a factor.