Chris Waokes
England pace bowler Chris Woakes says the racism and sexting scandals that have sidetracked the England and Australian cricket camps

Chris Woakes has revealed that the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) officials have apologized to him for making him take a taxi that ultimately ruined his winter. The all-rounder was told to share a cab with Moeen Ali from Birmingham to Heathrow Airport ahead of England’s Test tour of Sri Lanka in January.

Chris Woakes had to isolate for a week when his fellow passenger and teammate tested positive for COVID-19 after they arrived in the island nation. As a result, the 32-year-old out of the first Test at Galle and eventually saw him miss every game in winter despite being voted player of the summer last season.

The Birmingham-born cricketer recalled being frustrated with the unfortunate turn of events, adding that the winter felt like a ‘waste’ of form to him. He feels he could have been a part of the playing XI for the first test.

“It was a big moment and there have been apologies but we were put in an unfortunate situation and I missed out because of that. I vented my frustration at the time. No stone has been left unturned during COVID-19 but that’s the one thing we did not get right. I paid the price for that,” Woakes was quoted saying by Daily Mail.

“I thought I was a shoo-in for the first Test. It doesn’t mean I would have then played all Tests but I would have had a chance to put my hand up and put in a strong performance. Not playing all winter after the summer I had, feels like a waste. You want to make the most of your form when you’re hot,” he added.

England won the two-match Test series against Sri Lanka, but were thrashed 3-1 by India in the full-fledged series. Chris Woakes, who featured in IPL 2021 for the Delhi Capitals, also missed the recent two-test series against New Zealand but admitted that he had himself to blame for this one.

“The IPL was very much on my shoulders. But it was tricky. The tests were scheduled late and as soon as I got out of isolation I would have had to play for Warwickshire after just a few days at home. It was in our hands and I decided a break with my family would do me good in the long run,” he concluded.

Meanwhile, Woakes has now been named in the squad for England’s T20 series against Sri Lanka. For the records, he hasn’t played a T20I since 2015.

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