West Indies team depart for England for three-Test series

The West Indies cricket team have departed from Antigua for the three-Test tour of England slated to begin July 8.

According to Cricket West Indies, the team departed Monday evening after having arrived safely from the two charter planes that collected the players and staff from their home countries throughout the day.

“All the touring party based in the Caribbean completed their COVID-19 tests last week and all the results have been confirmed as negative,” said CWI in a media release.

On arrival in Manchester on Tuesday, the entire Windies touring party will be tested again for COVID-19 before taking part in the series which will be played in a “bio-secure” environment.

The bio-secure protocols will restrict movement in and out of the venues, so a group of reserve players will travel to train and help prepare the Test squad and ensure replacements are available in case of any injury.

“This is a huge step forward in cricket and in sports in general as we travel over to England for this series. A lot has gone into the preparations for what will be a new phase in the game,” said captain Jason Holder.

“I’m happy for the support and well-wishes we have been receiving from our loyal and dedicated fans once it was confirmed the tour would go-ahead. This has been a source of great inspiration,” he added.

The first Test is slated to be played at the Ageas Bowl in Southampton (July 8-12) with the second and third matches at Old Trafford in Manchester from July 16-20 and then July 24-28.

West Indies Squad: Jason Holder (captain), Jermaine Blackwood, Nkrumah Bonner, Kraigg Brathwaite, Shamarh Brooks, John Campbell, Roston Chase, Rahkeem Cornwall, Shane Dowrich, Chemar Holder, Shai Hope, Alzarri Joseph, Raymon Reifer, Kemar Roach.