India batsman Cheteshwar Pujara will not play for Gloucestershire this year following the postponement of the county season, the club have confirmed.
Pujara had been set to be available for the side’s first six County Championship matches, but the delay of the season till at least May 28 due to the coronavirus pandemic has wiped out the first seven rounds of the Championship.
In a letter to members and supporters, Gloucestershire’s CEO Will Brown and chairman John Hollingdale said: “We spent much of the winter preparing for the season in this, our 150th anniversary year, and we know it is a deep disappointment to all staff, players and everyone involved with the club that the season has been delayed. We will also now miss the opportunity to see Cheteshwar Pujara play for the mighty Glos in the 2020 season which we know our supporters were really looking forward to.”
Despite the blow of losing Pujara’s services, the letter did state that the club are “well placed” to manage the financial disruption caused by the coronavirus pandemic following “an excellent financial year”.
“We have now significantly reduced the number of staff and players actively working, and through a combination of local and national government initiatives have realised sizeable savings for the months of April and May,” the letter added.
“Our financial projections show that, even on the worst-case scenario of no cricket at all this season, the club should be able to break even this year and be ready to face the future in a strong financial position when this crisis has passed.”