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Sydney Test to be played with 25 percent crowd capacity over COVID-19 fears

The Sydney Test starts on January 7.
The Sydney Test starts on January 7.
Modified 04 Jan 2021, 09:41 IST

The New South Wales government has confirmed that the Sydney Test between India and Australia will have crowds at only 25 percent capacity. The government has announced this measure to deal with the recent Coronavirus outbreak in the city.

In the wake of this announcement, around 10,000 fans will be allowed into the SCG for the Test that starts on January 7. According to a report, every ticket sold in the lead-up to the match will be refunded. The revised tickets will be up for sale on Monday.

Cricket Australia (CA) interim chief executive Nick Hockley was quoted as saying:

“Reducing the capacity of the venue is crucial in achieving social distancing requirements, and we sincerely thank ticketholders for their patience, as we process refunds today, reconfigure the SCG seating plan to deliver these social distancing measures and go back on sale.
“Tickets will be back on sale exclusively to those who have already bought a seat at 5pm AEDT on January 4, with remaining tickets released at midday AEDT on January 5.”

CA committed to hosting Sydney Test in safe

environment: Hockley

Hockley added that CA is working closesly with NSW to put appropriate biosecurity measures in place for the staff, players, match officials, broadcasters and fans to ensure the Sydney Test is played under safe conditions. He stated: 

“To date, we have been able to deliver a safe and successful summer of cricket thanks to our detailed biosecurity protocols, the cooperation and support of public health officials and the hard work of so many people behind the scenes.”

Cricket Australia, though, remains hopeful that the crowd capacity for the Sydney Test could be raised from 25 percent as the match heads into the weekend.

Meanwhile, the final Test at The Gabba looks set to go ahead despite India’s preference to play the fourth Test at Sydney. While Queensland refused to alter quarantine rules for India, the state chief health officer Dr Jeannette Young gave assurances that players could interact inside the hotel. Young explained:

“They will be confined to the hotel. We have worked with them they can have bubbles within that hotel.
“Because they are going to be going and playing with colleagues in the matches so they will have exposure there. So it doesn’t expose me if they have exposure to each other in the hotel.”

While the Sydney Test will be played from January 7, the final Test is scheduled to be held at The Gabba from January 15.

Published 04 Jan 2021, 09:41 IST
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