WACA open to replace MCG: The growing COVID-19 cases in Victoria might force the Boxing Day Test to shift to some other venue.
Irrespective of how Australia’s summer scheduled is designed, one thing which is given is that the Boxing Day Test will be played in Melbourne. That being said, the ritual is in likeliness of getting affected by the increasing number of COVID-19 cases in Victoria.
It was nearly a month ago that former Australia captain Mark Taylor had opened up on the same issue saying that the Boxing Day Test could be shifted to either of Perth or Adelaide due to coronavirus-related concerns.
Most recently, WACA’s (Western Australia Cricket Association) Christina Mathews expressed confidence in Perth having it in it to become a hub for international cricket especially if Melbourne is rules out as a venue for the high-profile series against India.
“We haven’t given any thought to Melbourne [losing Boxing Day Test]. But what we have given thought to is the fact that Perth is ideally suited to being a hub for international cricket.
“We have two ICC-accredited grounds with accommodation next to them and with international training and playing facilities at them,” WACA boss Christina Matthews told News Corp Australia.
WACA open to replace MCG
When Cricket Australia announced the probable fixtures for India series, WACA had expressed disappointment at not getting to host a Test against India. Slated to host Afghanistan at the Optus Stadium to commence Test cricket in Australia this year, Perth might get to host India as well especially if the situation doesn’t improve in Victoria.
“So, if the MCG ends up being affected by COVID and we can’t run an international season as we would normally and we have to go into hubs, absolutely WA is there to take up the slack,” Matthews said.
If it comes to Australia hosting India under a bio-secure bubble, Matthews put forward the idea of conducting the Test series in South and Western Australia. It is worth mentioning that both the stadiums in Perth can be utilized as bio-secure venues due to hotels being in near proximity.
“You could easily start the Indian series in Perth with a couple of Tests and, pending on what the South Australia quarantine guidelines are, then move to Adelaide for the other two Tests,” Matthews added.