India Tour of Sri Lanka: SLC thanks Rahul Dravid for completing series despite COVID outbreak, says ‘If he wanted, he could have taken the team back’

India Tour of Sri Lanka: SLC thanks Rahul Dravid for completing series despite COVID outbreak, says 'If he wanted, he could have taken the team back’
India Tour of Sri Lanka: SLC thanks Rahul Dravid for completing series despite COVID outbreak, says 'If he wanted, he could have taken the team back’

India Tour of Sri Lanka: SLC thanks Rahul Dravid for completing series despite COVID outbreak, says ‘If he wanted, he could have taken the team back’: Rahul Dravid has received yet another pile of praises, this time from the Sri Lankan board for duly completing the Lankan series despite the Covid outbreak in the Indian camp. SLC secretary  Mohan de Silva said that the tour could’ve been discontinued after Krunal Pandya tested positive ahead of the second T20I. On the contrary, de Silva mentioned that Dravid acknowledged SLC’s efforts to take control of the situation.

If he wanted, he could have easily taken the team back to India. The most encouraging aspect of the whole Pandya episode was the role of the support staff of the Indian team, led by Rahul. If he wanted, he could have easily taken the team back to India. He was very accommodating and understood the situation. He appreciated the efforts we were taking and realised that we were doing our best to protect the boys from virus dangers with all bio-secure guidelines,” Mohan de Silva, the secretary of SLC, told Cricbuzz.

India Tour of Sri Lanka: SLC thanks Rahul Dravid for completing series despite COVID outbreak, says ‘If he wanted, he could have taken the team back’

Though India were in a fix as Krunal Pandya’s positive report dragged nine other players into isolation. This left India in a handcuffed situation where the Indian squad was left with exactly 11 available players to field in the remaining fixtures. Despite key players going into isolation, the head coach Rahul Dravid took a bold decision to continue the series as per the schedule.

We have 11 players available and we will play them. There is nothing to feel sorry about. All the 11 are good enough to make the XI and that’s why they were picked in the squad. I feel it is exciting to see them perform. Yes, the balance of the side will be a little fragile because we can only pick from the players available,” Dravid had said just before the start of the 2nd T20I on July 28.

Also read: IPL 2021: Indian Army hails CSK skipper MS Dhoni’s respect for armed forces, says, ‘MS Dhoni and armed forces are hands in glove’

SLC thanked BCCI officials for the smooth conduct of the tour

As the complete tour happened successfully as per the plans, the SLC reaped benefits of over 280 crore Sri Lankan rupees.

It was a very, very valuable tour for us. We were looking forward to it for a long time. We were very grateful to BCCI top brass – Jay Shah and Sourav Ganguly – for acceding to our request to play three additional T20Is. Originally the tour was for only three ODIs. It enhanced the commercial value of the whole tour. We ended up earning almost $ 14.5 million. It is a huge boost to our finances,” the SLC secretary disclosed.

The SLC official acknowledged the role of the governments of the two countries in ensuring the series did not end abruptly. He deliberated how the BCCI, the Indian High Commission and the team management took regular follow-ups regarding Krunal Pandya’s turn out of the episode. He went onto thank the sports authorities and government officials who gave a green signal to conduct the series.

SLC still clueless on how Krunal picked up Covid infection

De Silva declared that the SLC did try to trace how Krunal got infected but couldn’t get a solid clue.

We are not sure still but it could have been because the hotel staff who served Grant Flower (who had returned positive test before the series) may have come in contact with Pandya too,” he felt. After Krunal, two other Indian players – Yuzvendra Chahal and K Gowtham – too had tested positive and had to be separated from the Indian contingent.

While India had won the ODI series 2-1, Sri Lanka lifted the T20I contests with the same margin.

Also read: IPL 2021 in UAE: Shreyas Iyer और T Natarajan आईपीएल के दूसरे चरण में वापसी को तैयार, BCCI ने फ्रेंचाइजी को खिलाड़ियों को वापस लाने की अनुमति दी

India Tour of Sri Lanka: SLC thanks Rahul Dravid for completing series despite COVID outbreak, says ‘If he wanted, he could have taken the team back’

For all updates on cricket and other sports, follow insidesport.co