Trimmed-down Shield to run until mid-April

Trimmed-down Shield to run until mid-April

Cricket Australia has condensed this summer’s Sheffield Shield and men’s domestic one-day competition.

The Shield season will now consist of eight rounds followed by a final that is slated to start on April 15.

The one-day cup will run over five rounds, with its final scheduled for April 11.

The Shield, having started in an Adelaide hub last year, will now revert to being a home-and-away competition.

It will resume next Wednesday, when NSW host Victoria at the SCG while Tasmania take on Queensland in Hobart.

Within hours of announcing dates for the rest of summer, South Australia flagged that it would likely close its border to Melbourne soon.

Victoria aren’t scheduled to play in Adelaide during coming weeks, while SA aren’t due to play in Melbourne until the final Shield round on April 3-6.

The postponement of Australia’s Test tour of South Africa means Pat Cummins, who has been appointed captain of NSW’s one-day team, and a stack of stars will be available for their states.

CA consulted with state associations and the players’ union prior to locking in the trimmed-down season.

CA’s general manager of high performance Drew Ginn noted it was a decision made to manage the “physical and mental wellbeing of players, officials and staff” amid a taxing summer of biosecurity bubbles.

“It is out of this duty of care that, with the input and support of the states and territories associations and the ACA, we have elected to shorten the (Shield and one-day seasons),” Ginn said.

“While ensuring both competitions are of a sufficient length to ensure a high-level of competition.”

CA has also announced revised dates for the domestic women’s one-day competition, which has not been condensed.

The women’s national cricket league (WNCL) is set to conclude on March 27, when the Meg Lanning-captained Australia team will be in New Zealand for a limited-overs tour.

The Australian Cricketers’ Association (ACA) and CA, having rowed over proposed cuts to domestic fixtures in the past, are on the same page about the latest rejig.

Brendan Drew, the ACA’s manager of player relations, highlighted that the revised fixtures take “into account a level of fatigue for our male players following the BBL”.

“The ACA commends Cricket Australia and the states for their flexibility in delivering a domestic schedule in evolving and challenging circumstances,” Drew said.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.