South Australia will go into a 6-day state-wide lockdown from Thursday, casting fresh doubts on the first Test between India and Australia, which is scheduled to take place in Adelaide.
The Australian state that includes the city of Adelaide will go into a six-day lockdown from midnight, with schools, universities, bars and cafes closed from Thursday. Only one person from each household in South Australia will be allowed to leave home each day, and only for specific reasons.
Officials announced the severe move on Wednesday after a cluster of new cases grew to 22.
The Cricket Australia, on Tuesday, affirmed that the board remained committed to host the first Test between India and Australia at Adelaide from December 17, but it continues to monitor the situation in the city closely. Earlier, the CA arranged for every Adelaide-based player in the Big Bash League to leave the city for Coffs Harbour (a city in New South Wales).
According to a report in Guardian, Melbourne Cricket Club chief Stuart Fox has said that the MCG can be ready to stage the first Test if asked. However, no venue has been officially put on standby as of now.
"We’re capable and willing if required,” Fox told SEN on Wednesday. “I’m not picking up the phone to Cricket Australia. They know we’re available.
“I’m sure if they needed a back-up venue, the MCG is a possibility. It [Adelaide Oval] is a very iconic Test over there. I’d hate to see it moved. We lost the [AFL] grand final this year and it hurt us dearly.”
Earlier, Melbourne was also at risk of losing the Boxing Day Test, but the COVID-19 situation has improved in Victoria with the state yet to record a case for 19 successive days.