Cricket Australia on Saturday confirmed that the third Test of the ongoing Border-Gavaskar Trophy series will be played in Sydney despite a fresh COVID-19 cluster in the city.
“The third Vodafone Test is more than two-and-a-half weeks away, which provides us with time to assess the evolving public health situation on the northern beaches of Sydney,” said CA interim CEO Nick Hockley.
“We have made no changes to our schedule and our preference remains to play the match at the Sydney Cricket Ground,” he added.
Earlier, a report in The Sydney Morning Herald had stated that CA is mulling over the idea of taking the third Test – scheduled to be played jn Sydney from January 7 to 11 – to Brisbane and switching the fourth match to Sydney.
Hockley further pointed out that Cricket Australia has developed a solid track record of delivery throughout “this most challenging of summers” and would continue to make appropriate and proportionate decisions in consultation with our biosecurity team, governments, state & territory associations, the Australian Cricketers’ Association, our partners and venues.
“CA has prepared for the possibility of Covid-19 hotspots and state border closures over the course of the summer and the protocols that we have put in place have been effective in ensuring the safety and success of the men’s and women’s domestic and international programs to date,” the CA chief executive said.
“It was less than a month ago that South Australians were contending with an outbreak of the virus in Adelaide and we have just completed a brilliant first Vodafone Test at the Adelaide Oval,” said Hockley.
“We faced similar issues in relation to the Melbourne Cricket Ground playing host to the Boxing Day Test and we are now less than a week away from welcoming back Victorian crowds after a difficult year for the state. We will continue to work closely with all relevant parties to make the right decisions in the appropriate timeframes,” he added.
Australia on Saturday registered brilliant 8-wicket win over India in the first Test of the four-match series at the Adelaide Oval after the bowlers had bundled the visitors for a meager total of 35 runs in the second innings.
Chasing the target of 90 runs, Australia reached the total in just 21 overs on Day 3 of the pink-ball Test. Opener Joe Burns remained unbeaten on 51 off 63 balls.
Starting the innings with a 53-run lead, India lost nine wickets in just 27 runs in the first session on Day 3 of the pink-ball Test. Mohammed Shami, the No. 11 batsman, retired hurt and could not bat.
Josh Hazlewood (5/8) and Pat Cummins (4/21) with their fiery spells have now given Australia a complete control over the Day-Night fixture. The hosts need to chase 90 runs to take a 1-0 lead in the four-match series.
Australia and India will now face each other in the second Test beginning December 26 at the MCG where a total of 30,000 spectators will be allowed each day of the game.