Indian and Australian players will start their training for the SCG Test in Melbourne, where they currently reside after the previous Test. The teams will arrive in Sydney approximately 72 hours before the start of the New Year Test.
Cricket Australia interim Chief Executive Officer Nick Hockley has confirmed both India and Australia will not travel to Sydney on New Year's eve. In a virtual press conference, Hockley said:
"Last night's announcement was that we are proceeding to Sydney and we are putting our plans in place to do that safely. The players will be in Melbourne for a few more days training there, before moving to Sydney a couple of days ahead of the Test match.”
Cricket Australia on Tuesday had confirmed that the SCG Test will go ahead as scheduled despite the rise of COVID-19 cases in the northern beaches of Sydney. Explaining that they have all the bases covered, he added:
"As a part of the process we have been working very closely with the Queensland government and also with the health officers, so we had very detailed discussions over the last week.
"We had done all we could through this summer and had a contingency plan in place in Melbourne, which gave us the time and opportunity to decide.”
Wanted to give Sydney best chance of hosting SCG Test: Hockley
Hockley stated that Cricket Australia wanted to give Sydney the best chance of hosting the SCG Test, which is why there was a delay in confirming the venue. He further clarified:
"We wanted to give Sydney, the very best chance to able to go ahead and so on. We are taking the best advice from all the stakeholders. So it's been a detailed process and we had always said that will make the decision final after the Boxing Day Test and that's the time we needed to act on our all plans.”
India leveled the Border-Gavaskar Trophy 1-1 on Tuesday with an emphatic eight-wicket triumph at Melbourne. The SCG Test will get underway on January 7.Published 30 Dec 2020, 15:41 IST