Long stay by India could brighten Aussie summer

Updated: May 03, 2020, 08:24 IST | Clayton Murzello | Mumbai

It is learnt that the Australian authorities will propose to hold most matches at the Adelaide Oval, where a hotel is situated at the ground's premises.

Virat Kohli
Virat Kohli

With so much of disarray caused in cricket scheduling by the Coronavirus, it's a time to expect the unexpected. And that includes some plans which appear far-fetched yet do-able. Probably, the cricket establishment worst hit by the COVID-19 pandemic-caused chaos is Cricket Australia, who is scheduled to host October's T20 World Cup and a Border-Gavaskar Trophy series in the Australian summer of 2020-21. Not only has the India-Australia rivalry become the only second to the Ashes in terms of significance, but it is also a major money-spinner. It is safe to assume that no more virus-related threats to this summer's Border-Gavaskar Trophy will give the rulers of Australian cricket much hope to regain lost ground on the financial front.

Five-match Test series likely

A source in the know of cricket administration in Australia says that there could well be a five-Test match India v Australia series and an equal amount of ODI and T20 matches between the two nations. "The administrators here have it all planned. An Australian airline giant will step in to fly the Indian cricketers on a special flight. Social distancing norms will be maintained on board, ruling out all health threats to the players. Matches could be held in no more than two venues with no spectators in the stands of course," said a source. What happens to the Indian Premier League and the T20 World Cup dates? "From what I hear, the T20 World Cup will be held in February-March and India's tour of Australia for the five Tests and limited overs series will be staged from November to early January. The IPL will hopefully take place in the months of October to November," said the source.

Adelaide to host most games

It is learnt that the Australian authorities will propose to hold most matches at the Adelaide Oval, where a hotel is situated at the ground's premises. The Indian players will be extremely busy considering England are to tour India for a series which will be held on the Indian team's return from Australia.

India and Australia have not engaged in a five-Test battle on Australian soil since 1991-92 when the hosts won 4-0. Post the 1999-2000 Border-Gavaskar series which comprised three Tests, both countries have always engaged in a four-Test series Down Under.

India won their first Test series in Australia in January 2019 while Australia have not won a Test series in India since 2004-05.

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