Don't urge England to cancel India tour: Morgan

<img border='0' align='left' title=' ' src='' class='caption'> ICC President David Morgan has urged England to resume their India tour while hitting out at ex-players like Geoffery Boycott for demanding cancellation.

Updated: December 04, 2008 17:54 IST
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ICC President David Morgan has urged England to resume their tour of India while hitting out at former cricketers like Geoffery Boycott for demanding that Kevin Pietersen and Co. back out in the wake of the Mumbai terror strikes.

"I have seen British writers criticising the England and Wales Cricket Board for wanting to return while the disaster is still 'raw' in India to use Geoffrey Boycott's expression," Morgan was quoted as saying by 'The Daily Telegraph'.

"In my view they are failing to understand that it isn't for British people to make a judgment on what people in India want. It is quite clear that the people who run cricket in India want the game to resume as soon as possible. Wouldn't we want the same here if the boot was on the other foot?" he asked.

Former players like Boycott and Graham Gooch have urged for the cancellation of the two-Test series after it emerged that top players like Andrew Flintoff are reluctant to travel to India. But Morgan felt the show must go on.

"I think it's staggering when British journalists suggest that it is inappropriate to go because India needs to have time to mourn. Would we take that from Indian or Australian journalists? Of course we wouldn't," he explained.

Morgan hoped that ECB security expert Reg Dickason would give an all-clear to the security arrangements at the two Test venues.

"The first thing is that the safety and security of the cricketers and their management team is of the utmost importance," Morgan said.

"If Mr Dickason says it isn't safe, the players are not going to go and the ICC will have to decide whether it agrees with Mr Dickason or the BCCI. Time is short for an independent assessment to be made but that is what will have to happen. I hope things will not reach that point.

"If the England team chose to withdraw despite receiving the all-clear, it wouldn't just damage India it would damage England too. In terms of reputation, and perhaps in terms of financial reparations as well," he added.

Morgan said India is extremely important and the game cannot afford any long-term cancellation of cricket there.

"India's contribution to world cricket is extremely important and it would be disastrous if India were seen to be unsafe for international cricket for any period of time.

"It is not my style to interfere in what the ECB are doing, but I am very confident they're doing the best they can. I know Mr Boycott is saying that players will be in an inappropriate state of mind, but it's the same, if not worse, for the Indian players," said Morgan.

"We have to think of the business of cricket as well as the game of cricket. The terrorists cannot be allowed to win."

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