The Gabba and Adelaide Oval are among the venues in four states that have been lined up to host the opening matches during the forthcoming KFC Big Bash League.
The match-ups, start times and broadcasters for all regular season games have been confirmed, with venues in Tasmania, ACT, Queensland and South Australia locked in for the initial 21 matches to be played in December.
Venues for KFC BBL|10 matches scheduled in the New Year will be announced in the coming weeks, with organisers hoping to incorporate other states by then.
“The League hopes the easing of border restrictions around the country will allow matches to be played in every state throughout the tournament,” a spokesperson said in a statement. “The health and safety of players, staff and fans will always remain the No.1 priority.”
KFC BBL|10 launches on Thursday, December 10 with the opening stretch of matches to be played in Tasmania and Canberra. The 20,000-capacity Blundstone Arena in Tasmania will host the season opener between the Hobart Hurricanes and defending champions Sydney Sixers, where crowds of up to 10,000 will be permitted. Matches will also be played at University of Tasmania Stadium and Manuka Oval in this period.
From Wednesday, December 23, matches will also be held in Queensland at the Gabba and Metricon Stadium. The first KFC BBL|10 match in South Australia will be at Adelaide Oval on Monday, December 28.
Alistair Dobson, Cricket Australia’s head of Big Bash Leagues, said: “This is without doubt the most complex fixturing task ever undertaken by the League and we are excited with where it has landed. It has been a difficult year for so many people around Australia and we look forward to bringing the BBL to every state should border conditions allow us to.
“We are working through scenarios for the remaining 35 regular season matches and Finals series to be played in the New Year with our Clubs, broadcasters, partners and governments. An announcement on these venues will be made in the coming weeks.
“The KFC BBL is by far and away the most watched sporting league in the country on a per-match basis and we look forward to that continuing as we celebrate ten years of the Big Bash.”
Meanwhile, the Lankan Premier League (LPL) has been given the green light by the Sri Lankan government, following Thursday’s discussions with health authorities and the nation’s president.
The tournament is now likely to start on November 27 – six days later than presently scheduled – and will almost certainly be played entirely at the 35,000-capacity Sooriywawewa stadium in Hambantota. Plans to host some games at the Pallekele International Cricket Stadium in Kandy have been dropped.