England’s cricketers are ready to play this summer
Mark Wood says ECB bosses have unanimous backing from Test players for behind closed doors quarantine – even if it means nine weeks away from home. The England fast bowler admitted an extended squad lockdown in on-site hotels in order to fulfil international summer commitments would be “challenging”.
But he insisted all of the current England players are used to being away from home for long periods of time and will be ready to do their bit in order to play some cricket.
“It would be very hard but as long as the environment is safe, my family are safe and everybody else there is safe then I’d be willing to do it,” said Wood.
“I think everybody in the squad, as long as the conditions are right, would be willing to come back and play some cricket.
“We’re desperate to get going. I know it would be a long stint and it would be hard but it would be good to get back out there at the same time.”
England are hoping to be able to stage both summer Test tours against West Indies and Pakistan, probably using Southampton and Old Trafford as bio-secure venues, starting on July 8.
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England cricket players are ready to play behind closed doors this summer
Players have been told they could have daily checks for symptoms of Covid-19 including swabs and temperature checks. England are expected to have an initial squad of 30 players will rotate through the Tests.
“I think it will be challenging. I imagine what they’ll do is have a pool of players – we’ve talked about different fast bowlers, different swing bowlers, different batters,” said Wood.
“We’ll have a pool of players that we’ll dip into if the Test matches come thick and fast. I think that was the plan anyway certainly looking at my circumstances.
“I wouldn’t have played every game, I’d be in and out of the side to manage my workload and manage my body. I think that will probably be the same for the all the fast bowlers.”
He added: “Coming in and out of the side shouldn’t be a problem. We’ve never been in these circumstances before where we don’t know what’s going to happen on the down days – I guess you can’t just go home so maybe you’ll have to train in small groups.”