The spread of Corona Virus has affected the world of cricket more than anyone would have imagined. Amidst all the live cricket which the fans were already missing out on, the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) decided to pull out of the two-match Test series in Sri Lanka. The series was scheduled to start on March 19 and the English team led by Joe Root had already reached the island nation.
The team had, in fact, played two practice matches as well. On Sunday, Root and his men reached home and will now have to wait until their assignment comes in. But, several fans of the English team who had travelled to Sri Lanka to watch the series had still decided to stay back in the island nation and enjoy the holidays.
However, the Sri Lankan government has now closed its borders for the supporters who have turned up from the United Kingdom. It was announced that no one from the UK will be allowed into the Asian country after midnight local time on Monday.
‘We are in communication with Sri Lanka Cricket’: Barmy Army MD
According to the well-placed sources, many English fans are already in Sri Lanka while others were supposed to arrive in the upcoming days leading up to the series opener in Galle. A person, who was the part of the Barmy Army touring group, was stopped at the Colombo Airport for a long time. After waiting for hours, the man was allowed to enter the country. He was also informed that this was the last time anyone from the UK was let into the country.
The managing director of the Barmy Army, Chris Millard said, “One of our members, who was held at Colombo airport for several hours, has now been allowed in and has informed the Barmy Army that there will be no more flights following from the UK”.
Many fans decided to stay back in Sri Lanka even after the cancellation of the tour. But, with the government putting restrictions on the UK citizens, it seems their holidays under some threat.
“We are aware that over 50 of our members are currently in Sri Lanka and several more have travelled over the weekend. Our official travel programme still had 20 members wanting to go on the trip as a holiday, even with the cricket cancelled, but their flights have now been cancelled too.”
Millard assured that they are in talks with the Sri Lankan board in helping all the fans from the UK to get back home safely. “We are in open communications with Sri Lanka Cricket, tour operators and airlines to try to help our members get home safely. If anyone is out there and wants to speak to us, feel free to get in touch.”
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