MANCHESTER, England (Reuters) - West Indies captain Jason Holder says he hopes England will reciprocate his team’s visit during the COVID-19 pandemic and tour the Caribbean later this year.
England’s board had projected losses of up to $491 million if no cricket could be played this summer and the West Indies were hailed for agreeing to play the three-test series despite the UK struggling to curb the spread of the novel coronavirus.
“We don’t know what’s going to happen after this series with the international calendar but if there is an opportunity for England to come over to the Caribbean before the end of the year that would help significantly,” Holder said after England wrapped up the series 2-1 on Tuesday.
“It’s been a tough last few years for us financially and we’ve taken a pay cut due to the circumstances. A tour hopefully, if it is possible before the end of 2020, would help keep us afloat.”
The series, which saw the return of international cricket, was played in a bio-secure environment and Holder said smaller cricket nations might not be able to cover the costs of setting up a similar “bubble” to host visitors safely.
“We only really make money from England, and I think India. We break even with Pakistan and Australia, and all the rest of the series we play are losses,” he said.
“But in these trying times only England, Australia and India can probably host cricket. Outside of that, the smaller territories are struggling financially to get cricket on.”
Former West Indies captain Daren Sammy also wanted England to reciprocate with a tour.
“Let’s see if appreciation for our efforts will go unnoticed. They need to give us at least 20 million for all that money we saved them,” Sammy tweeted.
Reporting by Amlan Chakraborty in New Delhi; editing by Peter Rutherford
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