December 9, 2008

England in India 2008-09

England to donate match fees for Mumbai victims

ESPNcricinfo staff
Kevin Pietersen smiles from the team bus after arriving in Chennai, Chennai, December 8, 2008
 © AFP
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After making the brave decision to go ahead with the Test series in India, Kevin Pietersen and his team-mates have made another gesture that will surely win over the hosts: they will donate 50% of their match-fees from the first Test in Chennai to the families of the victims of the recent Mumbai terror attacks.

Alastair Cook, the opener, read out a statement from the team. "Following a very difficult period for the last two weeks, the England cricket team would like to recognise the following reasons for returning to India for the Test series.

"As an open and public statement of support for the Indian people following the tragic events in Mumbai recently. To extend our sincerest sympathies to those families that have lost loved ones in the Mumbai attacks. As cricketers, first and foremost to win a Test match series against India. Finally, the England players will donate half their match fees from the first Test match to the families of the victims of the Mumbai attacks."

Cook said: "We have made a massive pact this morning at our meeting when we came up with the statement that this is it and nothing else can distract us from playing cricket. It was something that everyone wanted to get across because as a side we felt we wanted to do it."

Mathew Varghese is sub-editor (stats) at Cricinfo

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