Western Australia premier insists England and hosts WILL have to quarantine for a fortnight ahead of final Ashes Test in Perth... with chances of schedule being reworked increasing following hard-line stance

Perth's Optus Stadium is due to hold the fifth and final Ashes Test of the seriesBut Mark McGowan has insisted on a full fortnight's quarantine for state arrivalsHe dismissed chance of anyone involved in Test being offered a reduction A second floodlit Test, at the MCG, is viewed as the most plausible scenario 

The chances of the Ashes schedule being re-worked have increased massively after Western Australia premier Mark McGowan took a hard-line stance on Omicron variant measures.

Perth’s 60,000-seater Optus Stadium, which has taken over from the WACA as the city’s main cricket venue, is due to host the fifth and final match of the series from January 14-18 but McGowan’s insistence on a full fortnight’s quarantine for state arrivals and a ban of families places it in serious jeopardy.

Dismissing any chance of anyone involved in the match being offered a reduction in the 14-day Covid quarantine required, he said: ‘We have put in place very strict rules. So, we’ve said to them, ‘you need to have 14 days quarantine’. And that must apply to all the broadcast staff, the cricket staff.

Australia captain Pat Cummins
England skipper Joe Root

Western Australia’s premier has insisted both England and Australia will have to quarantine for a fortnight before the fifth Test

Mark McGowan took a hard-line stance on arrivals in the state amid the Omicron variant

Mark McGowan took a hard-line stance on arrivals in the state amid the Omicron variant

‘They can’t just bring wives and girlfriends with them – same rules as we put in place for the AFL. It’s up to them whether they want to adhere to those rules or not.’

All the families of the England party intending to be part of the tour have arrived, barring that of one player and two support staff who are all scheduled to arrive for the Christmas period.

How the tourists react to loved ones being excluded from the final leg of the trip is yet to be seen, although it might not come to that with Cricket Australia seemingly ready to strip Perth of the match and award it to another city. 

A second floodlit Test, at the MCG, is viewed as the most plausible scenario.

Meanwhile, Sir Alastair Cook, the leading run scorer in England’s 2010-11 triumph down under, has signed a new two-year contract at Essex that will see him play on until the age of 38.

Perth's 60,000-seater Optus Stadium is due to host the fifth and final match of the series

Perth’s 60,000-seater Optus Stadium is due to host the fifth and final match of the series

A second floodlit Test, at the Melbourne Cricket Ground, is viewed as the most plausible scenario

A second floodlit Test, at the Melbourne Cricket Ground, is viewed as the most plausible scenario 

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