Cricket Australia has confirmed that the remaining two Test matches in the ongoing Ashes series will go on as per schedule. SCG will host the fourth Test between January 4-8 followed by the fifth Test at Hobart (January 14-18). England are likely to lose the third Test given that they are still trailing by 51 runs in their second innings. England are 31/4 after Australia scored 267 in their first innings.
Meanwhile, in an unfortunate news, four non-playing members of the England squad were contracted of Covid returning with positive tests. The four members who have contracted the virus comprise family members of players, and a coaching staff.
However, Cricket Australia CEO Nick Hockley said in a statement that the plans for the remaining series remains the same despite the Covid scare.
“Our protocols are designed for absolutely this set of events. We’ve got strong protocols. We’ve got very comprehensive testing regimes.”
“We just need to remain calm and get the facts. Everyone needs to follow the medical advice. On that basis, we keep going. We’ve been working on the plans for this tour for over six months.”
Meanwhile, Ian Botham and Ricky Ponting were missing from the Channel 7 commentary team after a panel member is said to have contracted the virus as well.
COVID Scare Hits Ashes 2021-22
When asked about the rising number of COVID-19 cases in Sydney, the venue for the fourth Ashes Test, Hockley said that there are no plans to change the schedule.
‘That’s not part of our current planning,. There’s nothing to suggest otherwise. We’ll rely on the protocols. It’s a day-by-day proposition.’
Brief scores: England 185 & 31/4 (Mitchell Starc 2-11, Scott Boland 2-1) trail Australia 267 (David Warner 38, Marcus Harris 76; James Anderson 4-33, Ollie Robinson 2-64, Mark Wood 2-71) by 51 runs.