The schedule for Australia’s Test series against India was again in jeopardy on Sunday as tourists were unhappy at the prospect of re-entering strict quarantine for the fourth Test in Brisbane. Australia-India trial questioned after boycotting of threat
The third Test in the four-match series will start at the Sydney Cricket Ground on Thursday, as Cricket Australia has decided not to move the match in view of the outbreak of COVID-19 cases in the city’s northern beaches.
On Monday, both squads will fly to New South Wales, which reported eight new locally transmitted cases of the virus and on Sunday accelerated social security measures.
The state of Queensland has closed its border with New South Wales and has however reached an agreement to allow players to fly to Brisbane for the fourth Test on 15 January. There is uncertainty as to what level of sanctions they will face after Sydney.
Reports in the Australian media, citing sources for the visiting party, said players from India, many of whom have been in quarantine or some other form for six months, if they were going to be subject to a tough lockout Will refuse to travel.
A spokesperson for the India team did not immediately respond to a request for comment on the reports.
The Indian players went through a rigorous 14-day concussion after their arrival in Australia but enjoyed more freedom while preparing for matches in Adelaide, Canberra, Sydney, and Melbourne.
However, some restrictions are still in place, and five Indian players were kept in isolation on Saturday when a video showed them eating inside a restaurant in Melbourne on New Year’s Day.
The Australian and Indian Cricket Boards are reportedly investigating violations of the biosafety protocol, in which former players may be advised to pay fines for their actions.
Sydney, who at one stage looked like losing the third Test to Melbourne, would be of most benefit if it was decided to move the fourth match from Brisbane.
Acting chief of state for New South Wales, John Barillaro, told reporters on Sunday that the government was focused on safely conducting the third test in front of a crowd of 20,000 fans.
“We’re going to commit to testing,” he said. “If an opportunity is posted, we will take that opportunity.”
Batsman Matthew Wade said the Australian players would be called strict in the protocol in Brisbane, but rejected the idea that there was now uncertainty about the schedule.
“There are a lot of things about us as a group but as a group and my position there, we will go to Sydney and play SCG and then we will go to Brisbane and play Gaba,” he told to reporters.
“We just roll over to the next game until the powers knock at the door and tell us it’s going to change …”