Perth has lost the fifth Ashes Test due to pandemic-related restrictions, Cricket Australia confirmed on Monday.
Cricket Australia has yet to name a replacement venue with a second Melbourne Test – under lights – and a Test in Hobart among the candidates.
In a statement Cricket Australia said: “CA and Western Australian Cricket have worked closely and constructively with the Western Australia Government and Perth Stadium over several months, with the shared goals of prioritising the health and well-being of the WA community, while providing the best possible environment for the players, their families, match officials, staff and broadcast partners.
“While absolutely every effort was made to ensure the final Test match of the series could be staged in Perth, border controls, quarantine requirements and the complexities of staging a five-Test series in a tight schedule have meant it is unfortunately not possible to align the respective priorities of the WA Government, CA and WA Cricket. These complexities also mean that any suggestion of changing the order of the venues would not be feasible.”
WA’s government had floated the idea of Perth hosting the second match in an exchange with Adelaide for the fifth Test as players could travel unhindered from Brisbane.
“CA is disappointed for WACA Cricket Members and WA fans who have been looking forward to this fixture for some time, however CA remains committed to continue bringing elite cricket to WA,” the stament continued.
“The WBBL Final was an enormous success with the largest standalone crowd in the league’s history, and CA and WA Cricket look forward to Perth Stadium hosting the Scorchers’ BBL opener against the Brisbane Heat on Wednesday, December 8.”
Nick Hockley, Cricket Australia CEO, said: “We acknowledge and appreciate the efforts of the WA Government, relevant agencies and Perth Stadium over recent months.
“We are very disappointed that we are unable to stage the fifth Vodafone men’s Ashes Test at Perth Stadium. We did everything we could in partnership with the WA Government and WA Cricket to make it work under the current border and health arrangements, but unfortunately this was not possible.
“We are particularly disappointed for Western Australian cricket fans who were so looking forward to seeing the first ever Ashes Test at the new stadium.
“We look forward to continuing to work closely with the WA Government, Perth Stadium and WA Cricket to hold upcoming BBL matches and the Dettol ODI v New Zealand in Perth and thank them for their continued support.”