India England ODI Tour – Mumbai Terror attacks

engEngland’s tour to India and Middlesex’s participation in the Champions League were thrown into major doubt on Wednesday night after a terrorist attack killed three people at the hotel where the two teams are due to stay.England will be guided by the Foreign Office but Cricket Australia last night moved swiftly to suspend all travel to India. Both countries share the same security firm and will listen to similar advice.

Middlesex were due to fly to Bombay at 10am on Thursday and stay at the Taj, which two weeks ago hosted England, before their first match in the city against Victoria on Dec 3. The club have now decided to delay their flight to India until Friday and the Champions League organisers last night switched the three Bombay matches to Bangalore.

“When we get the relevant reports through we will make a decision (on whether to go) then. As we speak now if we are told everything is fine I am prepared to say we will go but if they (the attacks) are cricket related that puts different slant on it.”

England are currently on tour in India and are due to return to Bombay for the second Test, which starts on Dec 19. An ECB spokesman said: “We will be guided by the Foreign Office.”

Cricket Australia’s decision will leave the paricipation of Western Australia and Victoria, in the Champions League in doubt. Several leading Australian cricketers including Matthew Hayden and Mike Hussey were also set to play for Indian teams in the tournament.

Middlesex are the only English team at the tournament which is due to be held from Dec 3-12 and has a prize fund of $6.5 million.

“It is very early to make any knee-jerk decision,” added Udal. “The phone has been ringing non-stop with the players wanting to know what is going to happen. We don’t know if it is cricket-related or not but it is an enormous coincidence.”

The Rajasthan Royals, the IPL champions, were due to arrive at the Taj hotel on Thursday morning but are delaying their plans with captain Shane Warne set to remain in Singapore until a decision is taken on the tournament.

The attacks took place in the financial district of Bombay which contains many of the city’s five-star hotels. The Oberoi hotel, which is close to the Taj, was also attacked. The Brabourne Stadium, the venue for the second Test, is situated in the heart of the area which came under attack.


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