Sussex Sharks fast bowler Tymal Mills admits it would be a “huge shame” if this season’s Vitality Blast season is forced to be played behind closed doors.

The England star flew back from the Pakistan Super League (PSL) and his Quetta Gladiators side to be at home in Hove as the coronavirus crisis worsened.

The pandemic has caused the postponement or cancellation of many sporting events or forced others behind closed doors, such as horse racing from today.

Although the cricket season has yet to start over here, Sussex cut short their pre-season trip to South Africa on Sunday.

The County Championship begins on April 12 with the T20 competition at the end of May.

The finale of the PSL is being played behind closed doors but Mills hopes the same fate does not hit the Vitality Blast which is held in front of packed out crowds.

He told The Argus: “It would be a huge shame.

“It would affect the competition more so than say the County Championship due to the discrepancy in crowd sizes.

“But it is still quite a way off, almost two months or so before the Vitality Blast is supposed to start, so hopefully things will have taken a turn for the better.

“At the moment it is just the unknown and nobody knows what is going to happen.

“Hopefully we get to play cricket, and if it is behind closed doors it is, but hopefully that is not the case as we do have such a great fanbase behind us.”

He added: “It would be a shame if they were not able to get behind us and able to come and watch.

“Last year we sold out 98% of home games tickets I believe, so financially that would have a huge impact on the club as well.

“That is a huge thing we would like to avoid as well.”