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Last Updated: Thursday November 27 2008 17:07 GMT

Cricketers cancel India matches

Indian security personnel stand guard outside the England team hotel (Photo by:  DESHAKALYAN CHOWDHURY/AFP/Getty Images)l

The England cricket squad is flying home from India on Friday, much earlier than planned, because of the violence in the city of Mumbai.

But at the moment the team is planning on going back to India next month, in time for two Test matches.

The team are still in India now, but were 850 miles away when armed gunmen attacked the city on Wednesday.

The squad was due to travel to Guwahati for their sixth one-day match, which would have been played on Saturday.

But instead they are staying in their hotel in Bhubaneswar, which is being closely guarded by security forces.

England are currently losing the seven-match one-day series 5-0.

Indian cricket chief Lalit Modi said it was hoped that the series could be completed in the future.

Kevin Pietersen (Photo by Julian Herbert/Getty Images)
Kevin Pietersen's team have lost five out of five one-dayers so far
Modi also claimed that England's two-Test series against India in December will go ahead.

The England and Wales Cricket Board hasn't confirmed this yet, but is set to make an announcement later.

The managing director, Hugh Morris, said the safety and security of the team was of "utmost importance".

The Twenty20 Champions League has also been postponed by the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BBCI).

The England performance squad, which was based in Bangalore, are travelling home straight away.