England’s premier pace bowler James Anderson has expressed his gratitude towards the West Indies team who decided to tour England, regarding it as a ‘scary decision’ amidst the corona virus threat. The tour will mark the resumption of cricket post the Covid-19 break. The West Indies team arrived on 8 June in Manchester for the three-match Test series to be held behind closed doors.
England has been one of the worst-hit countries in Europe with more than 50,000 deaths due to Covid-19 reported till date. During a conference call on Thursday, Anderson said,
I think it’s great for the game, brilliant that we are closing in on getting some Test cricket played after a decent lay-off
West Indies have sent a 25-man squad, including 10 reserve players, after three key members including Keemo Paul, Darren Bravo and Shimron Hetmyer decided to opt out of the tour. Anderson added,
From our point of view we’re very grateful the West Indies are coming over here. With what’s going on in the world I can imagine it’s a scary decision for a lot of them, for all of them, to make the journey over.
The pacer also focused on the need to manage the workload of fast bowlers and make the most of their rich pool of pacers. With three Tests spanning over 21-days and players coming off a long break, Anderson accepted that England might need to rotate the fast bowlers.
There are concerns — we’re not going to have any competitive cricket before that first Test match and we’ve got three Tests in quick succession, so there are obviously things we need to look at in terms of workloads and whether we play all three as bowlers or we rotate.
The much anticipated series is set to start on 8 July at Southampton, with the second and third Tests to be held at Old trafford.