The most complete and complex summer schedule of cricket that Australia has witnessed will feature a total of more than 330 days of international and domestic fixtures stretching from August until the end of March.
Full schedules are available at cricket.com.au
- Commonwealth Bank Women’s International Series v Pakistan
- Matador BBQs One-Day Cup
- Bupa Sheffield Shield
- Commonwealth Bank Women’s International Series v West Indies
- KFC T20 INTL Series v South Africa
- Carlton Mid ODI Series v South Africa
- Commonwealth Bank Test Series v India
- Carlton Mid ODI Tri Series v India and England
- ICC Cricket World Cup 2015
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The program, released by Cricket Australia this morning, includes men’s Test matches against India and limited-overs internationals against India, South Africa and England as well as the world champion Commonwealth Bank Southern Stars tackling Pakistan and the West Indies.
In addition, Australia and New Zealand will be co-hosting the ICC’s showpiece 2015 World Cup tournament for the first time since 1992, with the quadrennial event beginning February 14 with the final scheduled for the MCG on March 29.
The full KFC T20 Big Bash League, Women’s National Cricket League and Women’s T20 schedules will also be announced in coming weeks.
The need to find room in the schedule for a four-Test series against India as well as a number of Twenty20 internationals (including double-headers featuring the men’s team and the Southern Stars) has meant unprecedented complexity for fixturing.
However, Cricket Australia Chief Executive Officer James Sutherland said every effort had been made to ensure cricket fans throughout Australia have the opportunity to be part of an historic summer that follows Australia’s hugely successful Ashes whitewash and limited-overs performances in 2013-14.
“The next 12 months will have something for everyone,” Sutherland said.
“It contains some refinements from last season that benefits both players and fans.
“Never before have we had so much high quality cricket to offer around Australia, whether it’s international or domestic, men’s or women’s, or played with a red or white ball.
“Including the men’s Australia A series, which is being played in Brisbane, Townsville and Darwin during July and August, international or Australia A cricket will be played in every state and territory around the country over the next 12 months.
“For the players this season there is an extra round of our newly-named Matador BBQs One-Day Cup, while there have been additional days added between rounds of the Bupa Sheffield Shield to provide more rest, recovery and preparation time.
“CA is responsible for the scheduling of all international and domestic matches and the priority this summer has been finding a balance across the country to ensure fans enjoy what will be a sensational summer of cricket.
“While we only had four Commonwealth Bank Tests to schedule, there’s a full program of men’s and women’s limited overs matches, as well as the various competitions that make Australian domestic cricket the toughest and most competitive in the world.”The scheduling highlights of the 2014-15 season include:
- Commonwealth Bank Test Series against India, starting at the Gabba on 4 December. Fans in Brisbane will see the India Test team for the first time since 2003-04
- Two Carlton Mid ODI Series, first against South Africa and then a tri series between India and England, as the Australia men’s team prepares for the ICC Cricket World Cup 2015
- 16 home matches for the dual world champion Commonwealth Bank Southern Stars against Pakistan and then the West Indies
- Day-night Round of Bupa Sheffield Shield with matches in Adelaide, Hobart and Perth from 8-11 November as CA continues to trial balls and playing conditions that could potentially enable a day-night Test to be played
- Matador BBQs One-Day Cup to be hosted by Brisbane and Sydney from 4-26 October in the tournament format introduced successfully last season
- KFC T20 Big Bash League’s fourth season to start Thursday 18 December
- ICC Cricket World Cup 2015 in February and March in Australia and New Zealand
- In the next 12 months, international or Australia A matches will be played in every state and territory
The decision to stage the Australia Day ODI between Australia and India at the redeveloped Sydney Cricket Ground was confirmed last week and has raised the ire of cricket fans, commentators and even MPs in Adelaide.
However, Sutherland said the packed nature of the schedule and the fact that it included only four Tests rather than the traditional five of six meant challenges for programmers.
Adelaide had been chosen to host the international season opener following the completion of its $535 million redevelopment, which was only partially completed when it hosted international cricket last summer.
That fixture, on Wednesday November 5, will feature the Southern Stars playing the West Indies – the team the Australian women defeated in a semi-final on the way to securing their third consecutive World T20 title in Bangladesh – followed by the men’s team taking on South Africa.
“I think quite fittingly the first international match of the summer will be at the all-new Adelaide Oval,” Sutherland said.
“The new ground was partly completed last summer and we saw the potential of it this winter with football underway, and we’re very excited about the prospects of holding international cricket at the Adelaide Oval.
“I’m sure fans from Adelaide but also, as traditionally, fans from all over the country will flock to what will be a big summer of cricket there.”
The depth and diversity of the 2014-15 schedule will enable cricket fans to watch more live cricket than any previous summer, and see the world’s very best players on Australian soil in a variety of formats at international and domestic level.
It will also build significantly on the remarkable success of the men’s and women’s teams, and the huge interest from Australia’s cricket community generated last summer.
“Last season was a remarkable period for Australian cricket,” Sutherland said.
“Led by the record TV ratings for the Nine Network’s world-class coverage of international cricket, we set new benchmarks in almost every area including digital, radio coverage and attendance.
“With a Test series against India, ODIs against the top teams in world cricket, the ICC Cricket World Cup and another strong domestic calendar, this year promises to be even bigger.
“On the domestic front, as well as the extra Matador BBQs One-Day Cup matches and improved spacing of Bupa Sheffield Shield matches, we have also scheduled a round of day-night Shield matches early in the season.
“We think the November-December period is the most fan and player-friendly time of year for a day-night Test to be played if these trials are successful.
“Tickets to the international summer go on sale in late July and once again the best way for Australian fans to secure their tickets is through the Australian Cricket Family.
“Membership is free and fans who are part of this program are given to priority access to buy tickets before they go on sale to the general public.”