Uncertainty continues over venue for Perth Ashes Test

The 60,000-seater Perth Stadium in Burswood is a multi-purpose venue with drop-in pitches used for cricket Getty Images

Tickets for the Perth Ashes Test will not go on sale at the same time as those for all other venues as uncertainty continues to swirl around the status of the city's new all-purpose stadium.

A decision on whether the stadium will be able to host the third Test between Australia and England in December is expected to be announced in mid-May, after tickets begin to go on sale on May 1 for Australian Cricket Family members, before the general public sale on May 8.

While announcing the Ashes fixture last year, Cricket Australia had announced Perth would host the third Test between December 14 and 18 but did not specify a venue.

The 60,000-seater Perth Stadium in Burswood is a multi-purpose venue with drop-in pitches used for cricket. Plans to build the new stadium were announced in 2011 with its scheduled completion in early 2018.

In September 2015, the Western Australia Cricket Association had announced that international fixtures against England, South Africa and India from the 2018-19 season would be played at the new Perth Stadium, with the WACA Ground being adapted into a boutique venue for hosting smaller countries. Sheffield Shield cricket and domestic limited-overs games would also continue to be played at the WACA Ground, while the Big Bash League games would be played at the new facility.

The prospects of the Perth Stadium hosting an Ashes Test will also be affected by the delay in a public transport infrastructure project: a footbridge for use of spectators at the venue will reportedly only be completed later this year, many months behind schedule.

Last week WACA announced that the stadium's drop-in pitches had been successfully moved from their preparation grounds at Gloucester Park to the site where they will be tended to outside the new venue. However, the WACA chief executive Christina Matthews did not indicate whether the stadium was on course for an Ashes Test.

"This is an exciting milestone and I congratulate all involved in reaching this stage, in particular our Turf Team, led by Head Curator Matthew Page," she said. "The achievements to-date on the production of the wickets have been significant and the next phase will be even more so.

"I have absolute faith that we have the best people possible involved in this project and we continue to expect that we will be able to produce a wicket that provides WA cricket and the wider community with as entertaining a game as possible."

Two former officials of Cricket Australia, Mike McKenna and Chris Loftus-Hills, are overseeing the development of cricket facilities at the new stadium. McKenna, CA's former operations chief, accepted the role of chief executive of the Burswood stadium in September last year. Two months later, Loftus-Hill joined the team, having worked in collaboration with the Western Australia government and builders to prepare cricket facilities, including drop-in pitches, at the venue.