Before taking on England, the men’s team will face Afghanistan in a one-off Test at the Blundstone Arena. Aussie captain Tim Paine will lead Australia in his home state of Tasmania for the first time.
After the Tests, the men’s team will face New Zealand in three ODIs for the Chappell-Hadlee Trophy and one T20I in January-February. This will be followed by a five-match T20I series against Sri Lanka from February 11 to 20.
The women’s Ashes will kick off on January 27 at the Manuka Oval with a one-off Test in Canberra. Then there will be three T20Is and three ODIs in February, with North Sydney Oval, Adelaide Oval and Junction Oval in Victoria as the venues. In the multi-format system, the team with the most points wins the series.
Speaking after the schedules were released, Cricket Australia’s interim chief executive Nick Hockley hoped that crowds could make their presence felt during the summer. He said in a statement, "We're all hoping for a summer of full crowds and an Ashes atmosphere we’re all accustomed to. In a perfect world, we would welcome the Barmy Army back to these shores for a summer of singing and sportsmanship. Of course, we will be guided by the Australian government on all things related to international travel."
On Afghanistan’s visit, Hockley added, "We're thrilled they're able to come this year. It was a huge disappointment they were unable to tour last year. I've been speaking to the Afghan ambassador here, and I know the entire Afghan community in Australia is extremely excited so I'm certainly hoping as many of them as possible will be making the trip to Hobart."
--By A Cricket Correspondent