Cricket Article

Coronavirus Delays Australia's Contracted List Announcement

Coronavirus Delays Australia's Contracted List Announcement Photo: TT
Australian batsman Steve Smith acknowledges the crowd after scoring a century

Cricket Australia’s (CA) announcement of its annual contracted list has been delayed for a month due to the coronavirus pandemic.

Australia’s men’s and women’s contracted list for the 2020-21 season were due to be announced publicly this week but CA alongside the Australian Cricketers’ Association have agreed to hold it back.

The contracts runs for the 2020-21 financial year, which remains full of uncertainty as the coronavirus outbreak evolves and affects the world at different rates.

In the short term, Australia’s One-Day International series against South Africa earlier this month was halted after one match was played behind closed doors.

Australia were also due to play away to New Zealand in a white ball series, before the top players headed off for the Indian Premier League in April and May.

All of this is on hold, as CA re-assesses the situation, but also the long-term changes likely forced to the 2020-21 calendar which will have an economic impact. Any further announcement isn’t expected until mid-to-late April at the earliest.

CA has escaped remarkably unhampered in comparison to Australia’s winter sports, with the 2019-20 domestic season all but complete, while the recent Women’s T20 World Cup concluded in Melbourne on Sunday 8 March.

Australian women’s captain Meg Lanning said: “Given the uncertainty around whats happening around the world at the moment, I suppose it just makes sense to take a minute to take a breath and work out what we’re dealing with and what potential impacts it might have for the game moving forward.

“There could be an impact on a lot of people and it’s hard to know exactly what that is going to be. CA has been working with the ACA and they’re trying to give us as much clarity as they can on the contracting and what that might look like.”

Australia’s men’s team are due to tour Bangladesh in June and England in July, although both series seem unlikely to go ahead.

In August, Australia are due to play on home turf against Zimbabwe in August in three ODIs, before the 2020 Men’s T20 World Cup to be played in Australia in October and November.

Australia’s 2020-21 summer is headlined by the India series which includes four Tests, three ODIs and three T20Is.

Ben somerford
Sports Pundit staff writer @bensomerford
Australian journalist who specialises on all sports, focusing on football, tennis, basketball and racing, having written for global publications including FourFourTwo, AAP, Inside Futbol and many more....

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