The International Cricket Council (ICC) on Monday (July 20) confirmed the postponement of the T20 World Cup, scheduled from October 18 to November 15, which host country Australia's cricket board interim CEO Nick Hockley said was "inevitable" amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
The 16-team event was considered logistically impractical to be organised in these times, given the travelling restrictions, quarantine regulations and the need to put in place bio-secure arrangements for multiple sides.
"I think the decision to postpone was absolutely inevitable," Hockley told reporters. "It allows us to focus with real clarity on the summer ahead."
With the pandemic far from over, the shifting of ICC's flagship event to another year within the existing FTP was imminent, which is what the governing body did. However, it is yet undecided whether Australia will host it in 2021 or 2022, with the other one due to be held in India.
Hockley said there is no preference within CA to host it in a particular year. "We just want to see two great events go ahead, whether it's '21 or '22 in Australia I'm sure we'll put on a fantastic event."
"It's been a challenging time for everyone... thankfully, we're not talking about losing any events at all. It's really a case of them being held off until we can stage them successfully."
Australia's summer Test schedule, however, remains as it is, with Afghanistan first arriving for a one-off encounter in Perth in late November, followed by the four-Test Border-Gavaskar Trophy against India stretching upto the first week of the new year.
But is unlikely that the BCCI chief Sourav Ganguly's suggestion for a shortened quarantine period on Indian team's arrival will be allowed by the Australian government, which has made it necessary for anyone coming or returning to the country to isolate for two weeks.
"I think that two-week quarantine period is pretty well defined," Hockley said. "What we're working on is that even within that quarantine environment the players will have the absolute best training facilities, so their preparation for the matches is as optimal as it can possibly be."
(Inputs from AFP)