CA confident BBL can get through WA border

Scott Bailey
·2-min read

Cricket Australia is confident it can get Big Bash players into Perth as needed over the next fortnight despite Western Australia's border closure to Victoria.

WA is due to host five Big Bash teams in the next two weeks, however that was cast in doubt on Friday with the border change after COVID-19 cases sprung up in Melbourne.

CA's hub system has so far protected the BBL from the latest coronavirus outbreak, while matches have not been played in NSW where the outbreak first emerged.

But closure of the WA border with Victoria posed the most serious challenge so far, with a condition being that anyone who has been in Victoria since December 21 can not enter without quarantining for 14 days.

That threatened to hurt several BBL clubs, given some players left the Big Bash hubs over Christmas while families of others were allowed to enter.

Melbourne Renegades captain Aaron Finch was one to have visited his home state and his team is the first to play in Perth, against the Scorchers on Sunday.

The Sydney Sixers welcomed in a coach from Melbourne and are set to play in Perth on Wednesday, while other players had families who had spent time in Victoria visit.

There was a fear that would make anyone they mixed with in the touring parties potential close contacts, throwing into question whether teams could enter.

However by Friday afternoon CA was confident all players would be let in, with the worst-case scenario that teams would play while in quarantine.

The situation is another timely reminder of why CA was desperate to play the tournament in strict hubs, given there was no apparent threat in Victoria just three days ago.

Several Melbourne Stars players also visited Victoria before Christmas, but they do not travel to Perth for any games this season.

They have, however, been told to keep their distance from Hobart players while in Tasmania currently, given the Hurricanes have upcoming games in WA.

Earlier this week Alex Carey, Harry Conway and Nic Maddinson each missed a game in Queensland after they'd been in the NSW hotspot and couldn't get to Brisbane before borders closed.

It is also looking likely that Big Bash matches will be moved out of Sydney later in January, with cross-border travel to prove a significant challenge.

Meanwhile a call is likely to be made to postpone some matches at the start of the Women's National Cricket League, with significant scheduling challenges.

NSW are meant to play their first game of the 50-over competition in South Australia on January 15, but all interstate borders remain closed to the state at this stage.