Former England captain Alastair Cook feels this year’s county championship should be cancelled if there is no time to hold the prestigious competition, rejecting all the possibilities of a shortened campaign due to coronavirus outbreak. Cook said that considering the circumstances around the coronavirus pandemic, it will be more rewarding to play a full tournament rather than a shortened County season. Also Read - Playing Test Cricket a Big Goal of Mine: Sam Billings
The first seven rounds of County Championship have already fallen victim to the COVID-19. England cricket’s chief executive Tom Harrison has also made clear that the more lucrative domestic competitions will be prioritised when the situation improves. This means T20 Blast and the Hundred would take precedence over the County Championship. Also Read - Happy Birthday, Ben Stokes: Relive The England Allrounders' World Cup And Ashes Heroics
“In this year, over the next six months, the bigger picture is the most important,” Cook told the BBC. Also Read - Virat Kohli, Sunil Chhetri Mourn Kerala Elephant Tragedy, Call For Stringent Action Against Perpetrators
The England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) has postponed all cricketing action until May 28 because of the pandemic which has brought the whole sporting world to a standstill. The deadly virus has so far claimed more than 1000 lives so far in the United Kingdom and there are 17,089 confirmed cases in the country, one of which is Prime Minister Boris Johnson himself.
“Whatever happens, if we do play any sort of cricket, which hopefully we will, what I hope is that they don’t try and have a six-game County Championship or something like that,” said Cook.
“I would rather have one or two full tournaments, because if you do then play that tournament or two tournaments it is so much more rewarding to win it.
The former England opener said that making teams play only three or four games does not serve any purpose to the championship.
“If there is not time for a meaningful County Championship, say (you can only play) three or four games, there is probably not much sense us having it.”
“I would rather concentrate on two full tournaments than saying: ‘We have four tournaments that we need to play, let’s get them all in even if we have to shorten them.’ I think you would rather have two tournaments played full length so there is meaningful cricket at the end of it,” Cook said.