West Indies v England, 1st Test, Barbados January 23, 2019

ECB denies Stuart Broad bed-bug disruption ahead of first Test

ESPNcricinfo staff

Joe Root takes centre stage at the England team photo © Getty Images

The ECB has dismissed as "nonsense" a suggestion from Jonathan Agnew, the BBC cricket commentator, that England's preparations for the first Test in Barbados have been disrupted by an attack of bed-bugs in the team hotel.

Agnew, speaking on the BBC's Cricket Social programme, claimed that several of England's players had resorted to sleeping on mattresses in the corridor of their team hotel after the outbreak, adding that he had seen for himself the bites that had caused Stuart Broad to move rooms.

"He has got some terrible bed-bug bites, and on quite a sensitive area, which I inspected yesterday on the outfield," Agnew said, adding that he had been tipped off to the incident by Broad's mum.

"He went to bed fully padded up, as it were, with his whites on. Unfortunately it sounds as if a few have gone into his jockstrap."

To compound Broad's woes, he was left out of the Test team on the morning of the match. Despite joking that he had discovered the "untold story" of Broad's omission, Agnew admitted that such an incident would not have caused him to miss an England game.

"It is correct that Stuart has moved rooms at the hotel," said an ECB spokesman. "But it is nonsense to suggest that some players have been sleeping on mattresses outside their rooms. This is not true."

Responding to ESPNcricinfo on Twitter, Broad wrote: "I was getting eaten alive, managed to move rooms, no more bites. No disruptions. Nothing more to the story, not that this is a worthwhile story..."

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