Gabba losing out to Adelaide
BRISBANE will pay the price for an ageing Gabba facility after a crack South Australia Cricket Association presentation secured Adelaide Oval the final, prized Test against India of a packed 2018-19 summer.
Australia will host India in a four-match Test series starting in November-December next year with Sydney and Melbourne certain to stage traditional holiday slots.
Perth – denied a Test match when India toured four years ago – will host Virat Kohli’s side at the city’s glittering new $1 billion, 65,000 capacity Burswood stadium. Sri Lanka will play two Tests in January 2019, almost certainly in Brisbane and Canberra.
Cricket Australia and the Board of Cricket Control India (BCCI) will next month finalise the 2018-19 tour schedule.
CA chief executive James Sutherland concedes the Gabba has slipped down the pecking order and is now Australia’s fifth-ranked venue, with the stadium’s public amenities and outdated transport links of greatest concern.
And it can be revealed SACA and Queensland Cricket made presentations to Cricket Australia regarding hosting rights for an India Test during the lead-up to last week’s Ashes series opener at the Gabba where the Brisbane venue’s shortcomings were laid bare.
Adelaide’s regular sellouts, including a record 53,000 cricket crowd on day one of the inaugural Ashes Test under lights yesterday, and a $550 million redevelopment has the venue ahead of the Gabba in the pecking order to host India.
It leaves Brisbane fans facing the prospect of sharing a Sri Lanka Test series with Canberra, while Hobart will miss out on a Test next summer.
If Adelaide hosts it will be the first time superpower India will play a Test under lights.