London, Sep 28 (IANS) Tasmania could be chosen as the venue to host the fifth and final Ashes Test after the Australian government gave a strong indication that Perth could be out of bounds because of the stringent quarantine rules being implemented in Western Australia.
While the exact arrangements for the touring England side are yet to be worked out, the possibility of the fifth and final Ashes Test taking place in Perth are next to nil as Western Australia requires arrivals to undergo 14-day quarantine. The fourth Test at Sydney will end on January 9, while the Test in Perth begins five days later.
On Monday, Australian sports minister, Richard Colbeck, said that Tasmania — which incidentally is his home state — would be more than happy to host the final Ashes Test new year.
“We’ve had to do a lot of work to organise quarantine arrangements for cricketers coming into Australia,” Colbeck was quoted as saying by Daily Mail. “There’s serious questions about whether there’ll be a Test match in Perth this summer. If there’s no chance of coming here without prolonged quarantine, it just won’t occur.
“After the Melbourne and Sydney Tests, there is no timeframe for players to quarantine before flying to Perth, so I think those arrangements are largely settled. The Australian government wants the Ashes to go ahead, but the chances of the Perth Test taking place are very slim,” added Colbeck.
Tasmania — Australian Test skipper Tim Paine’s home state — was scheduled to host a one-off Test against Afghanistan in November but Cricket Australia (CA) cancelled the assignment after Taliban banned women’s cricket.