3rd Ashes cricket test to stay at WACA Ground

May 10, 2017
England's Eoin Morgan makes a shot during the second One Day International cricket match between England and Ireland, at Lord's, in London, Sunday May 7, 2017. (John Walton/PA via AP

MELBOURNE, Australia (AP) — Cricket Australia said Wednesday that the third Ashes test between England and Australia, beginning on Dec. 14, will be played at the traditional Perth test venue of the WACA Ground because a new Perth stadium will not be ready in time.

The Western Australian government informed Cricket Australia on Tuesday that construction delays meant that the 60,000-seat stadium at Burswood, set to host the test, would not be completed.

“It’s good now we have some certainty around where the Perth test match is going to be played,” Cricket Australia chief executive James Sutherland said in a statement. “We received advice yesterday in meetings with government.”

“Coming to Perth, we knew it needed to be finished ahead of time and everything needed to come together, but it’s still disappointing. We were really hoping the test match could be played at this magnificent new stadium.”

The WACA has hosted test matches in Perth since 1970 and is known for its fast, bouncy pitches which assist fast bowlers. Its limited capacity of 24,000 has led to Cricket Australia supporting the construction of a new Perth venue.

The five-test Ashes series will begin at Brisbane’s Gabba ground on Nov. 23. The second test, a first day-night match for the Ashes, is scheduled for Adelaide from Dec. 2.

The fourth match will be the traditional Boxing Day test at the Melbourne Cricket Ground beginning Dec. 26, and the fifth starts in Sydney on Jan. 4.

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