Kingston:The Indian cricket team kept its fingers crossed and geared up for the One-day series against the West Indies as the first ever Caribbean Games to be held in Trinidad and Tobago, slated for July, has been cancelled due to the outbreak of swine flu.
Trinidad and Tobago's Health Minister Jerry Narace and Sports Minister Gary Hunt said the Games were cancelled to prevent the spread of the influenza A (HINI) virus that has so far spread to more than 76 countries and infected more than 30,000 people.
India, however, will not play any of the four One-dayers in the Port of Spain, the capital of Trinidad and Tobago. They will play two matches each in the neighbouring islands of Jamaica and St. Lucia.
Eighteen confirmed cases of the virus have been found in the twin islands of Trinidad and Tobago and health authorities have warned that the figure is likely to increase in the coming days.
The sports minister said that the cancellation of the Games was "undoubtedly a major disappointment for many fans who were anxiously anticipating exciting competition."
"No doubt the athletes themselves will feel the greatest disappointment since they have been vigorously preparing to showcase their talents during the games. However, I am confident that they will understand the reasons for this cancellation and they will appreciate the wisdom behind the decision," Hunt said.
The outbreak of swine flu also forced the Caribbean Football Union (CFU) to postpone the 2009 Girls' and Boys' Youth Cup scheduled to be hosted in Trinidad and Tobago in July and August.