Boris Johnson has confirmed that cricket can resume next week – after a Friday U-turn from the Prime Minister.
“Having been stumped on radio this morning, the third umpire has been invoked,” said Johnson.
“What I can say is we want to work as fast as possible to get cricket back and we will be publishing guidelines in the next few days so cricket can resume in time for next weekend.”
Chief Medical Officer Chris Witty said it was “very safe” to do so, provided celebrations aren’t too exuberant.
Johnson, speaking on LBC radio on Friday morning, had earlier stated: “The risk is not so much the ball – though that may be a factor – it’s the teas, it’s the changing rooms and so on.
“There are other factors involved which generate proximity which you might not get in a game of tennis.”
Those remarks provoked a furious backlash from the sport, notably from the ECB.
“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,” said an ECB spokesperson.
“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.”
They were also described by the head of the club game as “totally bizarre” and “ill-informed”.
More to follow…
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