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Thursday, October 28, 2021

Cricket Australia ‘desperately’ wants to host final Ashes Test in Perth


A game of golf, heading to the beach and dining outdoors will be on offer for the squads for most of the series

Cricket Australia is continuing to work towards hosting the final men’s Ashes Test as scheduled in Perth in January with negotiations ongoing with the Western Australia government about the requirements to get the tour into the state but it will remain tough to get over the line.

Over the weekend, the ECB board gave conditional approval to the tour going ahead if certain “critical conditions” are met over the coming weeks – related to visas, travel exemptions and details over biosecure plans – and on Sunday the squad was named.

England will arrive into Queensland in two groups during November – the Test-only and Lions players on November 5 followed by those at the T20 World Cup later in the month – where they will undertake 14 days quarantine with additional freedoms around their resort hotel. Families will be able to join the tour.

The first Test takes place at the Gabba on December 8 followed by the second in Adelaide with travel between Queensland and South Australia currently free of significant restrictions. The tour then swings to Melbourne and Sydney with the expectation they will be open to each other by then, but the sticking point remains travel to Perth with WA indicating it is unlikely to lift their hard border to New South Wales until next year.

There is hope that the situation could have eased by mid-January as vaccination rates increase. But the likelihood is that if the Test does get the green light for Optus Stadium that the squads would need to return to tighter restrictions for the final week of the tour which could prove a hard sell to England who are strongly against strict bubbles.


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