Monday, June 17, 2024

ECB confirms Australia white-ball series to complete international summer of men’s cricket

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Photo Credit: Twitter photo of @cricketcomau

  • England and Australia to play three Vitality IT20s at The Ageas Bowl
  • Three Royal London Internationals will be played at Emirates Old Trafford

The England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) has today announced that Hampshire’s The Ageas Bowl and Lancashire’s Emirates Old Trafford will host England Men’s white-ball international matches behind closed doors later this summer against Australia.

The Australian squad will arrive into the UK on 24 August, travelling to Derbyshire’s The Incora County Ground before transferring to The Ageas Bowl after England’s third Test match against Pakistan on 27 August. Australia will play a 50-over intra-squad practice game and three T20 practice matches before the start of the three-match Vitality IT20 series against England commencing on 4 September at The Ageas Bowl. The Southampton venue will host all three Vitality IT20s including matches on Sunday 6 September and Tuesday 8 September.

The three Royal London Internationals will take place at Emirates Old Trafford on Friday 11 September, Sunday 13 September and the final match of the tour on Wednesday 16 September. The three ODIs will form part of the ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup Super League.

Vitality IT20s:

1st IT20 v Australia: Friday 4 September at The Ageas Bowl (6.00pm start)

2nd IT20 v Australia: Sunday 6 September The Ageas Bowl (2.00pm start)

3rd IT20 v Australia: Tuesday 8 September The Ageas Bowl (6.00pm start)

Royal London Series:

1st ODI v Australia: Friday 11 September at Emirates Old Trafford (1.00pm start)

2nd ODI v Australia: Sunday 13 September at Emirates Old Trafford (1.00pm start)

3rd ODI v Australia: Wednesday 16 September at Emirates Old Trafford (1.00pm start)

ECB Chief Executive Officer, Tom Harrison, said:

“We owe a significant debt of gratitude to the players, staff and administrators of Cricket Australia for their efforts in getting this tour underway. Their co-operation to ensure these matches are staged is crucial to cricket in this country. It will also provide much-needed financial aid at all levels of cricket in England and Wales as we work through the challenges in front of us.

“The rivalry between England and Australia is the pinnacle of sporting competition. The Vitality IT20s and the Royal London Series will be thrilling contests and a perfect way to culminate the men’s international season in this extraordinary summer.

“I want to congratulate my colleagues at the ECB and the various bio-secure venues working tirelessly in unprecedented circumstances, as we work to ensure that all England men’s international fixtures are fulfilled during the COVID-19 pandemic.

“In total, 18 international fixtures including six Test matches, six IT20s and six ODIs have been organised across two bio-secure venues, Ageas Bowl and Emirates Old Trafford, which is testament to our efficient planning both from an operational and medical point of view. I’m very proud of what our game has achieved, and that cricket is seen as the standard-bearers in developing bio-secure sporting events to the highest of standards.”

Cricket Australia interim Chief Executive Officer, Nick Hockley, added:

“We are very excited to be heading to England and to get back into the international fray. We congratulate the ECB on leading the resumption of the game in a way that places the health and safety of players and staff at its core.

“We would also like to thank the Australian Government for granting travel exemptions for the Australian men’s team, as well as all those who have worked tirelessly to put together a plan that allows for the tour to progress in a bio-secure way.”


Editorial notes:

Original dates for England Men’s series against Australia

England Men’s three-match Vitality IT20 series against Australia was due to start at Emirates Riverside on Friday 3 July. The second match was scheduled for Emirates Old Trafford on Sunday 5 July before the series was to conclude at Emerald Headingly on Tuesday 7 July.

The three-match Royal London Series was scheduled to begin on Saturday 11 July at Lord’s followed by the second match at the Ageas Bowl on Tuesday 14 July and the third match at the Bristol County Ground on Thursday 16 July.

Host Venue Panel

The ECB’s independent Host Venue Panel (HVP) recommended the use of two full matchday broadcast venues for the international fixtures against Australia.

HVP’s rationale for selecting venues:

Reducing the movement of people as much as possible, mitigating the risk of infection.

Reduces the number of individuals required to deliver the matches and in turn, reduces the risk of infection.

Reduces the movement of core infrastructure between venues and the associated time and costs.

Opportunity to create ‘island sites’ for the delivery of matches.

Venues will be locked down in bio-secure environments for long periods of time.

Take measures not to add to the burden on the NHS.

Venues had to demonstrate key principles to create a bio-secure environment. The criteria comprised of:


– Venue perimeter, access and access control

– Accommodation (onsite or nearby)

Medical screening/testing provision

– Designated areas for isolation of anyone presenting symptoms.

– Car parking requirements (approx. 200)

– Medical Screening and Testing sites (approx. 1500 m2)

Footprint to enable social distancing

– Extendable Players and Match Official areas

– Extendable space for broadcast compounds, studios and written media.

Venue/Cricket operations

– The number and suitability of TV pitches

– Provision for warm-up matches

– Indoor and outdoor practice facilities

The Ageas Bowl and Emirates Old Trafford will receive an administration fee for hosting the matches, and the ECB will meet all incremental staging costs.


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