Home » World Cup News » Australia men set to host Pakistan and West Indies in packed home summer

Australia men set to host Pakistan and West Indies in packed home summer


Test cricket will return to the WACA in Perth, with the Australia women’s team set to face South Africa for the first time in the format as part of their multi-format series early in 2024.

It will be one of three Tests Australia will play in nine months following the Ashes encounter in June and one on the multi-format tour of India set for December and January. However, unlike the five-day Ashes Test, the match against South Africa will be over four days.

Cricket Australia (CA) announced the home fixtures for the 2023-24 season on Sunday, which sees Pakistan men visit for three Tests, including the traditional Melbourne and Sydney fixtures, while both West Indies men’s and women’s sides will feature.

West Indies men are touring in consecutive seasons due to a quirk in the next FTP, with their Tests taking place in Adelaide, which will revert to a day game for one season, and then Brisbane which will host a day-night encounter.

The men’s Test summer stretches deep into January next season due to the 2023 ODI World Cup then a five-match T20I series tacked on afterwards, meaning Australia won’t return home until early December. However, the T20 and Test teams are likely to look very different.

Their summer begins with the first Test against Pakistan in Perth from December 14, before the teams meet in the Boxing Day Test in Melbourne and the New Year’s Test at the SCG.

Adelaide will host a red-ball Test against West Indies from January 17, before a day-night Test at the Gabba from January 25. It means all Tests will fall in the holiday period.

White-ball players will be available for the entire men’s BBL, before they enter camp for three ODIs and three T20s against West Indies between February 2 and 13.

But the opening of the international season risks being completely overshadowed by the National Rugby League (NRL), with the first match scheduled for Sydney on grand final day with Australia’s women playing West Indies in a T20I at North Sydney Oval on October 1.

That game will finish only hours before the NRL grand final, asking fans to choose which event to attend and viewers to switch off rugby league’s grand final lead-up games.

CA takes the view that in a cluttered schedule, a Sunday start in Sydney is the right way to go, hopeful they can benefit from Channel Seven promoting the match during the AFL grand final the previous day.

They are also adamant October 1 should be the start of the cricket season, that scheduling clashes with other sports are inevitable and that their world champion women’s team can win out.

But privately there are concerns from some over the significant challenges the sport will face promoting the T20 match in Sydney, with a second game to be played the day after the grand final.

Australia vice-captain Alyssa Healy was hopeful the situation would not impact crowds while acknowledging there could be some hurdles to overcome in drawing fans.

“It could be [a problem], maybe we might get washed out a little bit in that,” Healy told AAP. “But in saying that, it’s the start of the cricket summer. So hopefully that is spoken about that week.

“Yes, the headlines will be dominated by AFL and NRL, but they are anyway. Come and watch some world-class athletes do their thing at North Sydney if the NRL is not your thing. I don’t think we need to compete against the NRL grand final, we can work around it.”

It is not the first time concerns have been raised around the scheduling of women’s fixtures.

Players were unhappy when they were switched to play on January 26 last summer, with Indigenous woman Ashleigh Gardner vocalising her opposition to the decision.

Another match in the same series, against Pakistan at North Sydney Oval, clashed with the Sydney Smash in the BBL.

There is some good news for the women in the upcoming fixtures, however. After three T20Is and three ODIs against West Indies early in the summer, they host a multi-format series against South Africa in January and February.

Included is a day-night ODI at a major venue, Adelaide Oval, on February 3, followed by the Test on the pacy WACA wicket from February 15.


Source link


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *