Chris Woakes reveals England have apologised for making him share a taxi with Moeen Ali which put him into isolation before winter Sri Lanka tour as he admits ‘he paid the price’ for the decision
- Chris Woakes has received an apology from England over his taxi-sharing drama
- Bosses told Woakes to share a car with Moeen Ali, who tested positive for Covid
- The Warwickshire ace had to isolate for a week, missing the first Test in Sri Lanka
Chris Woakes has revealed England apologised for making him take the taxi ride that ruined his winter.
Woakes was told to share a car with Moeen Ali from Birmingham to Heathrow Airport ahead of England’s tour of Sri Lanka in January and then had to isolate for a week when his fellow passenger tested positive for Covid after they arrived in Hambantota.
That ruled Woakes out of the first Test in Galle and the knock-on effect meant he did not play a single game for England throughout the winter even though he was voted player of last summer by the PCA.
Chris Woakes felt he was a shoo-in for the first test in Sri Lanka before misfortune intervened
The England star was ruled out after sharing a taxi with Moeen Ali, who contracted Covid-19
‘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,’ said Woakes after joining up with England’s squad in Cardiff ahead of Wednesday’s first T20 international against Sri Lanka.
‘I vented my frustration at the time. No stone has been left unturned during Covid but that’s the one thing we did not get right. I paid a price for that.
‘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.’
The close contact with his team-mate meant Woakes did not play for England during the winter
The 32-year-old was also ruled out of the series with New Zealand because he played in the IPL
Not that Woakes, 32, can blame all his absences on the ECB’s ill-judged car-share scheme. The cricket he did play this winter was for Delhi in the IPL and that meant he was controversially ruled out of what became a chastening 1-0 series defeat to New Zealand.
Before now ECB have insisted they took the decision to rule their IPL players out of the Tests at Lord’s and Edgbaston but Woakes admitted yesterday he could have emulated New Zealand’s Trent Boult and insisted he wanted to play for his country.
‘The IPL was very much on my shoulders,’ added Woakes, who is set to play his first T20 match for England in six years. ‘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.’