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Haris withdraws from Pakistan's tour of England over coronavirus fears

by  Siany  •  Last updated on 2020-06-12 11:00:14

Middle-order batsman Haris Sohail on Thursday became the first player to withdraw from Pakistan's England tour over coronavirus fears, the Pakistan Cricket Board revealed.

Fast bowler Mohammad Amir will also not travel although his decision was based on personal reasons as his wife is due to give birth to their second child in August.

Pakistan will play three Tests and three Twenty20 internationals starting in August, with hosts England providing "bio-secure" arrangements in closed stadiums and hotels.

"Sohail's family was concerned about COVID-19, so he requested to withdraw from the tour while Amir has withdrawn so that he can be at the birth of his second child," a Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) spokesman confirmed.

Pakistan media reported that Sohail does not like to travel without his family, but they will not allowed on the tour.

Amir retired from Test cricket last year but was due to play in the Twenty20 games.

Sohail would have been almost certain to be named in the squad.

The England and Wales Cricket Board have provided special arrangements to reduce the risk of the coronavirus for their series in July against the West Indies which precedes Pakistan's visit.

Their matches will be played at Manchester and Southampton, both of which have hotels on site.

Pakistan will send 28 players and 14 support personnel on the tour.

Three West Indian players -- Darren Bravo, Shimron Hetmyer and Keemo Paul -- withdrew from the England tour over COVID-19 fears last week.

The West Indies team reached England on Tuesday and will play the first of three Tests in Southampton from July 8.