India to play two tour matches in Australia
India will play two warm-up matches ahead of the first Test of their tour of Australia later this year, the BCCI and Cricket Australia [CA] have announced. Both games will be played in Canberra, leading up to the Boxing Day Test in Melbourne.
The first warm-up game will be a two-day match against a CA Chairman's XI starting on December 15 at the Manuka Oval, while the second will be a three-day game from December 19 at the same venue, against the same opposition.
In August, the BCCI had asked CA for an additional warm-up game during the tour. Previously, India were scheduled to play a four-day tour game from December 18. The request was made in the aftermath of the disastrous tour of England - following India's 0-4 whitewash, severe criticism was directed towards the Indian board with regards to the team's preparation.
India play four Tests and two Twenty20s against Australia, followed by a tri-series that also includes Sri Lanka. The tour two matches will be a part of the inaugural 'Festival of Cricket' in Canberra, which will run from December 4 to 21. The festival also features a Sheffield Shield game from December 6 to 9 and a Ryobi One-Day Cup match.