Rohit Sharma lauds Joe Root's gesture as the latter apologises to the England fans

Rohit Sharma lauds Joe Root’s gesture as the latter apologises to the England fans

Due to the poor management, the bookings of the officials and both the teams at the same hotel were not confirmed and the fan were relocated at the last moment.

England captain Joe Root
England captain Joe Root. (Photo by Stu Forster/Getty Images)

England and Sri Lanka are currently involved in the three-match Test series in the island nation which the visitors are leading by 1-0. The second match is underway which has been poised nicely after three days of play. But more than the action in the middle, the game is in the discussion for off-field reasons. Around 100 England fans who had booked hotels and paid many months ago were told ahead of the second Test their rooms at the Earls Regency Hotel were no longer available.

Due to the poor management, the bookings of the officials and both the teams at the same hotel were not confirmed. In a bid to ensure that the players’ accommodation was at a good-quality hotel and in a close proximity to the ground, the Sri Lankan government insisted on moving out the supporters to accommodate the players. Also, the only other option was to move the Test match out of the venue.

But this step from the host board left the England fans fuming as they were relocated much further away from the ground and were anticipating journeys up to three hours each way from Dambulla. Needless to say that the inconvenience caused to the fans brought the uninvited embarrassment for the visitors.

England players meet the fans during lunch

After the hotel booking fiasco, England players including the skipper Joe Root met those supporters on the outfield during the lunch on the second day. They handed a letter to almost each one of the fans expressing their sympathy and was hand-signed by the skipper Root.

“As England Test captain, I would like to thank you on behalf of the team and the ECB for your support here in Sri Lanka.  We all feel the loyalty, commitment and passion that you and our travelling supporters show. It is unmatched in world cricket and must never be taken for granted. So it has been a huge disappointment to all of us that your plans for the Kandy Test match have been badly disrupted, with your accommodation moved so far from the Earl’s Regency.

“You would have made your plans some time ago and looked forward to an incredible experience, seeing this country and watching Test cricket. It was a big surprise to us to hear of Cricket Sri Lanka’s booking issue and the threat that the match itself might be moved altogether. I can assure you that the ECB has made its views clear.

“I also know how hard our tour manager here and his colleagues at Lord’s have worked to find a solution and that, whatever additional arrangement made by our hosts, this has had an impact on you and caused difficulties for your trusted tour operators. As leader of this group of players, I promise that we will do all we can to give you a performance to remember and thank you for your part in this Test match. Thanks too for your continued support – we hope to see you at the ground,” the letter read.

The fans are an important part of any sport and Root acknowledged the same in the letter apologizing the fans for the inconvenience caused to them. Meanwhile, Rohit Sharma, the vice-captain of India’s limited-overs team, lauded Root’s gesture and opined the same.

Here’s Rohit’s tweet:

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