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ICC official believes Australia’s latest decision to play big role in deciding fate of T20 World Cup

The PM of Australia on Friday announced that stadiums with a seating capacity of up to 40,000 would be allowed to fill 25% of seats with spectators.

SNS | New Delhi |

After the latest ICC Board meeting decided to keep the fate of the T20 World Cup hanging and refuted to take any decision for at least another month when they will have their next meeting, an insider has said that Australia’s decision to allow spectators inside stadiums will play a key role in decision making.

Scott Morrison, the Prime Minister of Australia – where the T20 World Cup is scheduled to happen from October 18 to November 15 – on Friday announced that stadiums with a seating capacity of up to 40,000 would be allowed to fill 25% of seats with spectators. For venues with larger capacity, further updates would be released.

According to news agency IANS, sources in the know of developments inside the last couple of ICC Board meetings said that entrance of people into the country would also play a major role since Australia is yet to open international boundaries.

“See, allowing fans could be a boost or a risk as contact tracing could be an issue if someone turns positive inside the stadium. But more importantly, the point remains that international boundaries are still not open in Australia.

“Also, the way the England-West Indies series pans out will have an overall impact on the whole process of future planning. Don’t read too much into empty stands and stands filled with spectators because these have already been part of the plans the board members have discussed in the last few meetings,” the source explained.

Meanwhile, a BCCI official has said that the new decision might put India’s participation in the T20 World Cup at risk. He said that even though the Indian team would be willing to play the tournament, it will all finally come down to the directives issued by the government as well as the health professionals as the safety of the players is the priority.

“It is a bold step by the Australian government and I am sure they have taken the step after assessing their circumstances for sports in Australia. We would be only happy to participate in the T20 World Cup in Australia but there are a lot of things that are in play and they all centre around health. The factors that affect the decision finally are factors that are not in the control of the BCCI.

“We would have to decide in accordance with the directives of our government and the advice of health professionals. The safety of our players and fans is paramount for us and it is not that the team has to travel in an exclusive and disinfected bus from Mumbai to Pune and play there and come back straight from the ground to their respective homes in a completely controlled environment,” the official pointed.

With IANS inputs