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No hand shakes for England players in SL due to coronavirus

March 03, 2020 10:21 IST

'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 have been given in our immunity packs.'

IMAGE: England's players celebrate a wicket during the fourth Test match against South Africa in Johannesburg in January. Photograph: Lee Warren/Gallo Images/Getty Images

England's players will avoid shaking hands and instead greet each other with fist bumps on their tour of Sri Lanka in a bid to avoid the coronavirus, captain Joe Root said.

Root said as of now the tour will continue as per schedule despite the coronavirus spreading throughout the world.

 

"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 have been given in our immunity packs," he said.

"There is no suggestion that the tour 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."

England were hit by a series of gastroenteritis and flu problems before and during the first Test during their tour of South Africa recently and hence will be extra cautious during their upcoming trip of Sri Lanka.

"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 have been given some really sound and sensible advice from our medical team to help prevent spreading germs and bacteria," Root said.

England, who won 3-0 in Sri Lanka two years, will play their first warm-up match against the Sri Lanka Board Presidents XI in Katunayake, starting on Saturday ahead of the two-Test series.

"The conditions will be a bit different with the time of year we are going this time," he said.

"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.

"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.

"We respect how good a side they are in their own conditions and we'll find ourselves up against a stiff challenge."

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