Logic in allowing third Test match at SCG ‘will be questioned’

Broadcaster Michael McLaren says some will question the logic in giving the SCG the green light to host the third Test match against India, given tightened restrictions surrounding New Year’s celebrations.

It comes after Cricket Australia decided Sydney will host the third Test match on January 7– despite concerns about the coronavirus outbreak on the city’s Northern Beaches.

NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian said the “best health advice tells us outdoor, ticketed, seated events are safer than household gatherings, and that’s just a fact”.

Meanwhile the state recorded 18 new cases of coronavirus overnight, prompting health alerts in a variety of locations and the tightening of restrictions.

Restrictions now include the reduction of people allowed at outdoor gatherings in Greater Sydney from 50 down to 30, while households will be limited to five people on New Year’s Eve.

The Northern Beaches will remain under its current restrictions.

“With these Sydney restrictions in place, some will question the logic in the giving the SCG the green light to host the third Test against India next Thursday,” Mr McLaren said.

“After all, whilst people are being told to stay out of the city tomorrow night and to limit household gatherings to very small numbers, in just seven days’ time thousands of people will be permitted to cheer every four, six and wicket in an apparently COVID-safe way.

“I’m obviously no epidemiologist, but it just doesn’t add up in my mind, and if you ask me it is yet another example of the confusing mixed messages that have dominated the government’s response to COVID from the start.”

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