Aussie cricket fans left fuming over 'sickening' change to Adelaide Test

Despite hosting a day-night Test every year since 2015, South Australian fans have been left 'dudded' by Cricket Australia's fixture for the upcoming summer.

Australia's men's team poses with the trophy after closing out the Test cricket series against the West Indies in Adelaide.

Cricket Australia has announced a suite of changes to the the Test schedule over summer, with Adelaide losing the day-night Test, which has been shifted to Brisbane. The marquee fixture in South Australia has been replaced, with Adelaide to host the West Indies for the second year in a row - this time in a traditional daytime Test in January, as opposed to the day-night fixture that has been in place since 2015.

South Australian cricket fans have reacted with frustration at the announcement, which will also see Perth host the first Test of the summer against Pakistan, who will also face Australia in Sydney and Melbourne. Some fans believe Cricket Australia has taken Adelaide's reliably strong crowds for granted, and fear a Test against the West Indies will prove to be a let-down.

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The announcement did contain some good news for Adelaide, with South Australia set to host marquee Tests against India and England in the Decembers of 2024 and 2025 - however it's little consolation heading into the home summer this year. Brisbane joins Adelaide in hosting a lowly-ranked West Indies, but Queensland's Test will at least be a day-night match.

South Australia has been campaigning to secure the New Year's Test away from Sydney, pushing it's case further after another Test interrupted by unfavourable weather when Australia hosted South Africa earlier this year. Under a looming CA initiative, a clearer window of fixtures will be delivered to states seasons in advance in future.

Part of that initiative will also include a transparent process for why Tests are awarded to each city, showcasing what each state can offer financially and through other means. With that in mind, South Australia will remain steadfast in their push to claim the New Year's Test off Sydney.

"We believe that is still on the table," SACA CEO Charlie Hodgson said. "My understanding of the allocation process is it will go from next year onwards.

"While we have been guaranteed the December Test as a minimum, that is still an opportunity from next year on. We believe we deliver the best product of all the Test matches. And that is why we should be rewarded with the best Test matches."

Meanwhile, many fans were raising an eyebrow at the scheduling this summer. Plenty felt it was harsh that Adelaide, which has consistently attracted string crowds, had been dealt a less than ideal hand for the 2023-24 summer.

Adelaide to continue pushing for New Year's Test

Hodgson on Thursday made no secret of the fact his organisation was not happy with the January fixture, which will clash with cycling's Tour Down Under in the state. The organisation will, however, not need to pay a fee to host premium Tests in the next three years, saving up to $8.4 million in total.

"There are 8.4 million reasons why CA has listened to our concerns about the scheduling," SACA president Will Rayner said. "That is a very substantial concession, as is their commitment to a longer-term process."

The Australian Test team congregates around fast bowler Mitchell Starc.
Australia dominated the Test series against the West Indies last summer, with South Australian fans not optimistic about the standard of contest expected when they return later in 2023. (Photo by Chris Hyde/Getty Images) (Getty Images)

If South Australia cannot prise the New Year's Test away from Sydney, then the SACA will push for a day-night Test in December each season as part of CA's long-term schedule allocation. "The fact is whenever we hold a Test here, we know it's going to be a great event," Rayner said.

"That is the point. We were saying to Cricket Australia that just because we put on a great event no matter when it is scheduled, it doesn't mean we should be taken for granted."

With AAP

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