The fifth Test match between India and England was canceled after India refused to play due to the COVID-19 outbreak in the team camp, as per the reports. India's support staff members, including head coach Ravi Shastri, were tested positive for the Coronavirus.
Former India cricketer Sunil Gavaskar has reacted to the criticism of the Indian cricket team after the COVID-19 cases in the team. Questions have been raised over the mid-series book launch of Shastri which is said to be the reason for COVID-19 cases in the team.
However, Gavaskar said fingers can't be pointed at the Indian team without finding the actual reason. "How does anyone know that it happened during the book launch? Because even after the book launch, when players were tested, they were negative. From what I've heard, the tests that took place on the eve of the match were all negative. So if none of our players were positive, what was the problem?", he said on Sports Tak.
"And reports that suggest the Indian players refused to play the match, I want to know who it was? These reports are only in English papers. They will never say or write anything good about the Indian team; they will always hold them responsible. Please find what is the truth and then point fingers."
Gavaskar doesn't believe Indian players refused to play the fifth Test match and he feels they would have been eager to take the field being 2-1 up in the series.
"Our players worked so hard to lead the series 2-1. And in Manchester, their bowlers would have been aided… why wouldn't they want to play? They would want to play the match because they can win the series 3-1. So I will never believe that Indian players refused to play the 5th Test.
"If these reports are true, then the BCCI needs to officially say, that 'Yes, our players said that they won't play'. Else, I would request not to make such claims without any proof," he added.
(With Sports Tak Inputs)