NEW DELHI: The Indian cricket team, led by Rohit Sharma, is stranded in Barbados after a Category 4 hurricane struck the Caribbean islands early Monday. The team, which secured victory over South Africa in the T20 World Cup final on Saturday, is currently staying in a five-star hotel.
Due to the hurricane, Barbados has been experiencing life-threatening winds and storms since Monday, with the country going into lockdown since Sunday evening.The island’s main international airport is closed indefinitely, and water and electricity supplies have been disrupted.
Barbados, a country with nearly three lakh population, is still assessing the damage and working to restore normalcy. The team’s departure back to India has been delayed by at least another day.
“Like you people, we are also stuck here. First we need to see how to get the players and everyone out of here safely and then we will think about the felicitation upon arrival in India,” said BCCI secretary Jay Shah, who got here ahead of the big final.
The squad, along with top BCCI officials including Jay Shah, was scheduled to leave for India via a charter flight on Monday. This plan was hindered by the closure of the airport. Additionally, the BCCI is making efforts to evacuate the travelling Indian media from the hurricane-hit region.
“There was a charter flight we were trying for Monday but the airport is shut so that option is gone. We are in touch with multiple charter operators but it all depends on the airport operations. As per the current state of affairs, no plane can land or take off.
“The plan is to fly directly to India with a refuelling stop in US or Europe. We are in touch with airport officials. The airport is expected to remain shut till Tuesday afternoon. If the weather improves significantly, then it might open earlier. The wind speeds have to come down for the flight operations to start. You can’t really fight with nature. We need to wait and see,” a source told PTI.