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Cricket Australia keeps Melbourne as standby for New Year Test

by  Neel Ashar  •  Last updated on 2020-12-24 15:34:22


Due to the current Covid-19 outbreak in Sydney, Cricket Australia is mulling to have the Melbourne Cricket Ground ready for the New Year Test, the 3rd Test of the India versus Australia Vodafone Test series if the need arises. In a press statement, Cricket Australia said recently- “CA has reaffirmed its commitment to giving it the best chance to play the third Vodafone Test at the Sydney Cricket Ground and the fourth Vodafone Test at the Gabba as per the original schedule. Should the public health situation in NSW render playing in Sydney untenable, CA’s preferred contingency plan is to work with the Victorian Government to play the third Vodafone Test at the Melbourne Cricket Ground followed by the fourth Vodafone Test at the Gabba. "

Cricket Australia's interim chairman, Nick Hockley is working with the concerned state authorities to ensure that the New Year Test in Sydney does not get disrupted. However, he said, " We are working constructively with the Queensland Government and have been encouraged by the positive nature of discussions with them. We thank the Queensland Government for their support. The record testing numbers and the drop in new community transmissions in NSW have provided cause for optimism, however, if the situation in Sydney deteriorates, we have strong contingency plans in place. 

Even the Chief Executive Officer, Steve Fox, was optimistic about hosting the 3rd Test- "I’ve been in touch with Cricket Australia daily and our position has been, we would love to see the Sydney Test Match stay in Sydney, it’s no fun having it relocated. We’re ready to go if we’re needed, but again, if that Test can get away in Sydney, it’s such an iconic Test, very traditional and an important sporting moment in Australian sport so let’s hope it gets away, I’d hate to see it moved. Obviously, there’s a lot to think about with staffing, preparing another pitch and ticket sales, so we’re in a position, we’re ready to go, but again, let’s hope it stays in Sydney."

India Tour of Australia schedule- 

Dettol ODI Series: 

1st ODI: November 26 at the SCG

2nd ODI: November 28 at the SCG

3rd ODI: November 30 at the Manuka Oval

Dettol T20I Series: 

1st T20I: December 04 at the Manuka Oval

2nd T20I: December 06 at the SCG

3rd T20I: December 08 at the SCG

Pink Ball warm-up match 

Vodafone Test Series: 

1st Test (D/N): December 17 to 21 at the Adelaide Oval

2nd Test: December 26 to 30 at the MCG

3rd Test: January 7 to 11 at the SCG

4th Test: January 15 to 19 at the Gabba

Test squad: Virat Kohli (Capt only for the 1st Test), Mayank Agarwal, Rohit Sharma, Prithvi Shaw, KL Rahul, Cheteshwar, Ajinkya Rahane (vc for 1st Test and captain thereafter), Hanuma Vihari, Shubman Gill, Saha (wk), Rishabh Pant (wk), Bumrah, Mohd. Shami, Umesh Yadav, Navdeep Saini, Kuldeep Yadav, Ravindra Jadeja, R. Ashwin, Mohd. Siraj

T20I squad: Virat Kohli (Capt), Shikhar, Mayank Agarwal, KL Rahul (vc & wk), Shreyas Iyer, Manish, Hardik Pandya, Sanju Samson (wk), Ravindra Jadeja, Washington ThakurSundar, Yuzvendra Chahal, Jasprit Bumrah, Mohd. Shami, Navdeep Saini, Deepak Chahar, T Natarajan, Shardul Thakur