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England may seek change in India itinerary

Published: Tuesday, December 5, 2000, 23:53 [IST]
 
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Karachi: England will seek to keep their tours of India and New Zealand brief next year to provide a break for players drained by a long cricket season.But English Cricket Board media manager Andrew Walpole on Tuesday said that speculation in The London Times that five members of theEngland team currently touring Pakistan may make themselvesunavailable for the tour of India and New Zealand next year was not true.''There is no panic button yet as far as the players are concerned,'' Walpole said. ''We will negotiate with the Indian Board and New Zealand forthe itinerary and make proper arrangements accordingly so that youngmembers' families do not suffer because the players are away toolong,'' he added.The England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) are negotiating with the Boardof Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) and New Zealand Cricket Council on plans for next winter so members of the England touring team are not away too long. The two tours will fall in November and December.Walpole said, ''Tim Lamb, the chief executive of the ECB, came to Pakistan during the first Test at Lahore and met the team's operation manager Phil Neale and both are now looking at various options of the itinerary.''The itinerary for next winter is not finalised yet and I am sure Neale, who has taken up the roll of the tour planner, will have everything under consideration before finalising the next winter's tour,'' Walpole said.It is likely that England will be playing three Tests each against India and New Zealand in November and December, followed by three One-day matches against each. There is a possibility England will have separate teams for Tests and One-day Internationals.England, after the present tour of Pakistan, will have a six-week gap before touring Sri Lanka. They then host Pakistan for two Tests in May and five Tests against Australia besides a triangular One-day series during the English summer involving England, Australia and Pakistan. (c) Reuters Limited. Click here for Restrictions


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