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Australia vs India Test series to start with pink-ball game in Adelaide

The four-Test series between Australia and India later this year is set to start with a day-night Test in Adelaide. The long tour (more than two months) is likely to begin with the white-ball games – three ODIs in Brisbane followed by three T20Is in Adelaide – and then the first Test, subject to final nods from the local state governments in Australia.

The pink-ball Test, which will be India’s maiden day-night Test overseas (and only their second overall), is scheduled to be held at Adelaide Oval between December 17 and 21. Melbourne will remain the venue for the traditional Boxing Day Test (December 26-30) followed by Tests in Sydney (January 7-11) and Brisbane (January 15-19).

The Indian contingent is expected to travel directly from the UAE to Brisbane immediately after the completion of the IPL on November 10. It is understood that Cricket Australia has pencilled in the November 25-30 period for the ODIs and December 4-8 for the T20Is. The Indians are then set to play a pink-ball warm-up match in Adelaide before the first Test. The warm-up is likely to be an intra-squad game keeping in mind the public health guidelines in place because of the Covid-19 pandemic.

Although both Cricket Australia and BCCI have internally agreed on the itinerary, they have not made it public because they are waiting for the formal nods from the state governments in Australia. One of the specific things Cricket Australia is looking for is the permission from the Queensland government, which is yet to approve international arrival and quarantine of the Indian and Australian players from the IPL in Brisbane.

Currently, anyone coming in to Queensland from overseas or even outside the state has to undergo a mandatory 14-day quarantine. With the tour scheduled to start around November 25, the two teams would want to train during the quarantine period, but that can only be done with permission from the Queensland government.

Previously, governments in Western Australia and South Australia were reluctant to waive off the quarantine period for the two teams in order for them to start training immediately after landing in the country, and that forced Cricket Australia to shuffle the venues around.

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