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England confirm three-Test series against West Indies in July
West Indies Tour of England

England confirm three-Test series against West Indies in July

England have confirmed the proposed dates for the three-Test series against West Indies next month subject to government clearance.

The three matches, originally scheduled to begin on June 5, will be conducted at Ageas Bowl and Old Trafford without spectators.

The first Test will be played in Southampton on July 8 before the teams move to Manchester for the remaining two games on July 16 and 24 respectively.

West Indies are due to arrive in the country on June 9, following which they will have to self-isolate themselves for a three-week period. During this time, the tourists will be allowed to train and prepare for the red-ball clashes as they will be based at Old Trafford.

"Our main objective is to deliver a safe environment for all stakeholders including players, match officials, operational staff, essential venue staff, broadcasters and media," ECB director of events Steve Elworthy was quoted as saying in the board's media release.

"We are in daily dialogue with government and our medical team, who have been incredibly supportive during this period. These are our proposed dates and they remain subject to UK government approval.

"We would like to thank Cricket West Indies for their co-operation and dedication in making this tour a reality, and we all look forward to the prospect of cricket returning in the coming weeks."

According to the initial itinerary, the matches were supposed to be staged at The Oval, Edgbaston and Lord's but these grounds have been overlooked owing to ECB's priority of "bio-secure" venues.

Ageas Bowl and Old Trafford are equipped with on-site hotels where players and support staff can be closely observed for signs of COVID-19, helping the organisers eliminate the risk of virus transmission.

This series could potentially put a stop to the prolonged gap of international cricket due to the unprecedented coronavirus pandemic. England were earlier set to play a two-Test series in Sri Lanka in March but their tour was postponed midway through a practice game.