Australia vs India: The four-game test series is 1-1 with two more games to play.© AFP
Nick Hockley, Cricket Australia’s interim Chief Executive Officer, confirmed on Wednesday that Team India and Australia will not travel to Sydney on New Year’s Eve and will stay in Melbourne for a few days. The teams will start their training for the third test in Melbourne, arriving in Sydney approximately 72 hours before the match. “Last night’s announcement was that we are moving on to Sydney and we are working on our plans to do it safely,” Hockley said in a virtual press conference.
“The players will be in Melbourne for a few more days to train there before moving to Sydney a few days before the test match,” he added.
Cricket Australia confirmed on Tuesday that the third test between Australia and India will continue as planned at the Sydney Cricket Ground, adding that the decision was made after several days of meetings detailing the effects of the recent COVID-19 outbreak on the Northern beaches of Sydney.
“As part of the process, we worked very closely with the Queensland government and also with health officials, so we had very detailed discussions over the past week,” said Hockley.
“We had been doing all summer and had a contingency plan in Melbourne, which gave us time and opportunity to decide,” he added.
Hockley said the cricket body wanted to give Sydney the best chance of receiving the third Test and therefore the final decision was made at the 11th hour.
“We wanted to give Sydney the very best opportunity to proceed and so on. We take the best advice from all stakeholders,” he said.
“So it has been a detailed process and we have always said that the decision will be final after the Boxing Day test and that is the time it took us to implement our plans.”
India tied the four-game streak at the Melbourne Cricket Ground on Tuesday, and the win also brought the visitors one step closer to the World Test Championship final.
The third test between the teams starts on January 7.
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