Tim Paine concerned over AUSvIND Boxing Day Test being moved out of MCG

Tim Paine concerned over AUSvIND Boxing Day Test being moved out of MCG

India has played the Boxing Day Test match at the MCG on eight occasions starting from 1985.

Tim Paine
Tim Paine. (Photo Source: Getty Images)

The captain of the Australian Test team, Tim Paine has expressed his concerns over the Boxing Day Test match against India later this year being moved out of Melbourne due to the coronavirus threat. India is scheduled to play the Border Gavaskar Trophy in Australia later this year. The series will start in Brisbane and then shift to matches in Adelaide, Melbourne, and Sydney.

With the number of cases of coronavirus experiencing a spike in the city of Melbourne, the boxing day Test could be shifted out of the city. Each year this match which starts on December 26 is played at the Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG) and it is a tradition for Australian cricket.

If MCG doesn’t get to host this match, then the match could be shifted to Perth. The Optus Stadium in the Western Australian state is considered as one of the best in the country. It has a capacity of 60,000.

Given the current circumstances, I dare say everything is well and truly on the table: Tim Paine

“Certainly, from a player’s point of view, we want to be playing in front of big crowds at the best venues and a big day like Boxing Day is something that everyone looks forward to and a big part of that is playing at the MCG,” Paine said in a video message posted on CA website. “Fingers crossed things are going well enough that we can do that but, as I said, we are spoilt for choice here in Australia with some world-class stadiums. If something had to change, then, again, we have plenty of options.”

The tradition of boxing day has been relevant in many Commonwealth nations, including Australia, New Zealand, and Canada. It is the day after Christmas. The first Boxing Day Test match took place between Australia and England in 1950. Since then, each year the boxing day Test is played between December 26 and 30. India has played Boxing Day Test matches in Australia in 1985, 1991, 1999, 2003, 2007, 2011, 2014, and 2018.

Paine also added that anything can happen with regards to this series. There have been also rumors that Paine might retire from international cricket after this series.

“Given the current circumstances, I dare say everything is well and truly on the table. We are hopeful that everywhere we play come summertime, we would be able to have crowds,” he said. “How big they are, we don’t know, obviously. But it’s a difficult one for anyone to answer because there is so much changing week to week, day to day,” Paine concluded.