KARACHI: The spread of the coronavirus has become a cause of great concern worldwide as the pandemic is now also disrupting sporting events along with other activities.
Thee ongoing Pakistan Super League’s schedule was tweaked recently and games are now being played without spectators.
The situation has also created some doubts over the fate of the upcoming One-day International and Test matches between Pakistan and Bangladesh.
The teams are scheduled to play a solitary ODI on April 1 and the second of the two Tests starting from April 5, both to be played at Karachi’s National Stadium. The possibility of the fixtures — the Test being part of the ICC Test Championship — taking place looks bleak.
Talking to this correspondent from Dhaka, an official of the Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB) expressed concern over the spread of the coronavirus and said the BCB expects the Pakistan Cricket Board to make a final call on the matter.
“The pandemic is of course a cause of great concern for us as well because sporting events around the world are getting hampered”, the BCB official said On a question re the possibility of games in empty stadiums, the official said it is not only the hiccup they are facing at the moment.
“Another apprehension is the suspension of flights, from Bangladesh, to various destination and also a strict scrutiny procedure has been placed by the government for those returning Bangladesh from abroad. This aspect as well as the willing of players has to be taken into account,” the official said.
“We are looking up to the PCB to make the final call.”
The first bilateral Test match of the split series was played in Rawalpindi between February 7 and 10, in which Pakistan overpowered the visitors by an innings and 44 runs.
In January, Pakistan won the three-match T20 International series 2-0 in Lahore.
Published in Dawn, March 16th, 2020