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England's tour of India is still on: Dalmiya

Published: Friday, October 12, 2001, 0:12 [IST]
 
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New Delhi: England's tour of India will go ahead as scheduled next month despite security concerns over US strikes against Afghanistan, officials announced in New Delhi on Thursday.
 "As far as we are concerned, the tour is on," Jagmohan Dalmiya, newly elected president of the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI), told reporters in Delhi. Dalmiya added the England Cricket Board (ECB) had not demanded any change in venues and he hoped to cement details of the tour during his meetings with English officials in Malaysia next week. Dalmiya, former chief of the International Cricket Council (ICC), is due to attend the executive board meeting of the sport's governing body in Kuala Lumpur from October 15 to 19. England is scheduled to play three Tests in Mohali, Ahmedabad and Bangalore during the first part of the tour, which starts on November 14. The tourists will return home for Christmas before arriving back in India in mid-January for a series of five One-day Internationals. Doubts over the tour arose after the Indian government cancelled the inaugural Afro- Asian Games in New Delhi in November soon after the September 11 terrorist strikes in New York and Washington. New Zealand and Sri Lanka have cancelled cricket tours of neighbouring Pakistan over the last month. England's cricket official Tim Lamb had on Wednesday expressed confidence the tour of India would go ahead, but said the situation was being closely monitored. "We are obviously in touch with our High Commission in India and will take specific advice, as we always do," Lamb said. "I don't want people to think we are blindly going without taking advice. We have never knowingly sent our players to parts of the world where their safety was at risk. "If we need to consider any changes we will do in the light of events that may occur up to the date of our departure in the middle of next month," he said. "We are monitoring the situation on a day-to-day basis but we don't know what it is going to be like in the next five weeks."

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