Cricket Australia (CA) would suffer a huge financial loss of (AUD)200 million (approximately Rs 10.85 billion) if the England team refuses to tour Down Under for the Ashes series, which is scheduled to begin in December this year.
According to a report in Sydney Morning Herald, any boycott because of the England player” refusal to undergo resort-style quarantine for themselves and their families around the five-Test series would leave an Australian Dollars (AUD)200 million blackhole in Australian cricket’s finances.
“About AUD100 million of that would be as a direct impact on the Australian broadcast rights deal with Channel Seven and Fox, while sponsorship, overseas broadcast rights, and ticket sales would make up the bulk of the remainder. International, state, and Big Bash male and female cricketers receive roughly a quarter of Australian cricket income, with a large chunk of the remaining AUD 150m earmarked for grassroots cricket,” the report stated.
On Monday, the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) had said that it will decide later this week whether the proposed arrangements in Australia are sufficient for the Ashes tour to go ahead or not.
Notably, the Ashes is due to begin on December 8 in Brisbane.
ECB released a statement on the Ashes tour, saying that they will make a decision over ‘whether the conditions in place are sufficient for the tour to go ahead’ later this week.
Notably, the upcoming Ashes tour to Australia has been in doubt due to the quarantine issues and uncertainty on whether the England players’ could accompany their families with them or not during the long tour, featuring five Tests.
“Over the weekend we have been talking to England men’s players and management to provide them with the latest information about the proposed arrangements for this winter’s scheduled Ashes tour,” the ECB said on Monday.
“We remain in regular and positive dialogue with Cricket Australia over these arrangements as the picture is constantly evolving. With health and wellbeing at the forefront, our focus is to ensure the tour can go ahead with conditions for players and management to perform at their best. We will continue talking to our players this week to share the latest information and seek feedback. Later this week the ECB Board will meet to decide whether the conditions in place are sufficient for the Tour to go ahead and enable the selection of a squad befitting a series of this significance,” it added.
The five-match series, which is scheduled to start from December 8, will end on January 18.
Recently, England captain Joe Root had said he was desperate to be part of the tour however, did not confirm his participation.
Last month, UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson, on behalf of his country’s cricketers, had pleaded with his Australian counterpart Scott Morrison in Washington DC last month for the families to be allowed to travel to Australia.
Earlier, several England cricketers had expressed their displeasure over the tough quarantine rules in Australia.
Along with Root some of the other England members had earlier cited Australia’s strict quarantine and travel protocols as the major reasons for their reluctance to tour Australia following which the respective boards of the two teams have induldged in dialogue.
Due to Covid-19 pandemic, Australia have put some strict rules under place for people arriving from abroad and there is a mandatory 14-day quarantine even if the person is fully vaccinated which means England team’s family members may not be allowed to travel with them.
Notably, not being with their families during the long tour has been a major deterrent for many England’s players.