Australia must tour England in September “for the health of world cricket”, and players should then be released to join the Indian Premier League, coach Justin Langer said on Thursday.
Despite the challenges of Covid-19, Langer said Australia had to play its part in getting cricket moving again, even if it meant enduring quarantine, biosecurity restrictions and time away from family.
“My personal view is we have to go. For so many reasons,” Langer told News Corp Australia. “I think we have to go to England. There’s lots of challenges of course but we have to find solutions to make sure that can happen if possible.”
Australia’s limited-overs series scheduled for this month in England was postponed because of the coronavirus, and September has been raised as an alternative.
Cricket Australia, which has laid off 15% of its staff during the pandemic, is also desperate to host a money-spinning Test series against India later this year.
“I think for the health of world cricket, Australia’s tour of England must go ahead. As much as we’d like India to come over here, I think we need to reciprocate that with England if we can.”
Langer believed releasing Australia’s big names to join the IPL – whose revised dates are yet to be announced – was also essential as a goodwill gesture, to make sure India go ahead with their Test tour.
“I think we have to. Talking frankly,” Langer said. “I hear a different story about the IPL’s plans every few days. It varies. So until there’s some clarity and we can work out how it affects the domestic season, how it affects our players, how it works with quarantine... there’s a lot of considerations here.”
After months of coronavirus-enforced lockdown, international cricket resumed on Wednesday with England’s home Test against the West Indies.
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