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9 out of 10 chance India will tour Australia: CA chief

Last updated on: May 22, 2020 11:00 IST

'But I wouldn't, hand on heart suggest we'll have full crowds from the start. We'll just have to see how that goes'

India are set to tour Australia later this year with the tour scheduled between October and January 2021.

IMAGE: India are set to tour Australia later this year with the tour scheduled between October and January 2021. Photograph: Quinn Rooney/Getty Images

Australia are a "nine out of 10" chance to host India for a Test series in the home summer and could also tour England for limited overs series beforehand, Cricket Australia boss Kevin Roberts said.

CA is currently under lot of financial stress and is desperate to have the India series, which will fill its coffers with AU$300 million from broadcast rights after the Board had to cut costs due to the pandemic. The series is scheduled between October and January 2021.

Cricket has been shut down since March due to the novel coronavirus outbreak and while travel curbs remain Australia has begun easing social distancing restrictions after infections slowed to a trickle.

 

"I guess there’s no such thing as certainty in today’s world so I can’t say 10 (out of 10), but I’m going to say nine out of 10,” Roberts told a roundtable held by Australia's News Corp when asked about the prospects of India touring.

"I’d be really surprised if we can’t get the Indian tour away. But I wouldn’t, hand on heart, suggest we’ll have full crowds from the start.

"We’ll just have to wait and see how that goes."

"With the variable being, who would know whether we can have crowds … I'd be really surprised if we can't get the Indian tour away.

"But I wouldn't, hand on heart suggest we'll have full crowds from the start. We'll just have to see how that goes," the under-pressure chief executive said.

Australia had planned to tour England in July for one-day and Twenty20 series before the COVID-19 pandemic plunged the international schedule into doubt.

England are looking at hosting the West Indies and Pakistan in July and August.

Roberts said he had spoken to the England and Wales Cricket Board on Wednesday and there was "some chance" Australia could tour England after the West Indies and Pakistan tours.

"Obviously we won’t jeopardise the safety of the players, but the best Test of that is that the West Indian and Pakistan tours ... go off without a hitch," he said.

While the India tour is a lucrative one, it is unlikely that Australia would host Afghanistan for a one-off Test, which is not a part of the World Test Championship schedule.

The chances of T20 World Cup in Australia are also looking dim in the prevailing circumstances as it could either be shifted to 2021 while India hosts its edition in 2022.

Roberts was less optimistic about Australia's chances of hosting the Twenty20 World Cup, scheduled to start in October, given the logistical challenge of bringing in 15 teams.

"We don’t have clarity on that one, yet. But as the situation continues to improve, you never know what might be possible," he said.

"It's ultimately a decision for the ICC (International Cricket Council)."

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