Melbourne, May 25 – No Australian player is expected to pull out of the scheduled month-long Test and limited-overs tour of Sri Lanka starting June 7, even as the island nation grapples with massive power cuts, fuel shortage, and a shortage of medicines and essential supplies.
The Australian cricketers are scheduled to fly out for the three-format tour next week, with a report in cricket.com.au saying that the players are also looking at ways to “support Sri Lankans with the country in an economic crisis”.
This will be Australia’s first tour of Sri Lanka in six years and the report said that while some players had “expressed concern” and had “a level of discomfort” about the political unrest in the country, no one had indicated that they wanted to pull out. Australia last toured Sri Lanka in 2016.
Australian Cricketers’ Association (ACA) CEO Todd Greenberg was quoted as saying in the report that some players “had raised questions about the moral and ethical implications of the tour given the situation in Sri Lanka”, but were ready to tour.
“The players are very aware of the situation in Sri Lanka and it’s fair to say there is a level of discomfort around touring in conditions that contrast those faced by the people of Sri Lanka, such as rising food prices, power cuts and fuel rationing,” Greenberg told AAP.
“Ultimately our players want to continue to play cricket and will take direction, guidance and advice from CA about tour arrangements and planning.”
The tour will start with a T20I match, with the opening game of the three-match series scheduled in Colombo on June 7. The T20I series will be followed by five ODIs, beginning with the game in Kandy on June 14. Both the Tests will be played in Galle (June 29-July 3 and July 8-12).