England Test skipper Joe Root

Amid concerns related to coronavirus, England Test skipper Joe Root has revealed that the team will not go for handshakes in their upcoming tour of Sri Lanka.

The skipper further said that the players would be greeting each other with fist bumps.

“After the illnesses that swept through the squad in South Africa, we are well aware of the importance of keeping contact to a minimum and we’ve been given some really sound and sensible advice from our medical team to help prevent spreading germs and bacteria,” quoted Joe Root as saying.

“We are not shaking hands with each other, using instead the well-established fist bump, and we are washing hands regularly and wiping down surfaces using the anti-bacterial wipes and gels we’ve been given in our immunity packs,” he added.

England’s players were hit by a series of gastroenteritis and flu problems before and during the first Test on their recent tour of South Africa.

“There is no suggestion that the tour (Sri Lanka series) will be affected, but of course it is an evolving situation so we are in regular contact with the authorities and will proceed as advised, but at this stage we fully expect the tour to continue as planned,” Root said.

Coronavirus, which originated from China’s Wuhan city, has now spread to more than 50 countries. The World Health Organisation has declared the outbreak an international health emergency.

The last time England toured Sri Lanka, the side managed to defeat the hosts 3-0. However, the England skipper realises that the challenge would be different this time around.

“The conditions will be a bit different with the time of year we are going this time. The three games we played out there last time were all very close with less than 60 runs between the teams in the last two Tests,” Root said.

“It was an exceptional performance last time and I think we can take a lot of confidence from that in terms of how to play out there,” he added.

England will take on Sri Lanka in a two-match Test series. The first Test will be played from March 19-23. (ANI)


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