Cricket Australia is not budging on its decision to block Optus Stadium’s shaded fifth tier from general admission access, despite scorching Perth temperatures rising well above 30 degrees on Thursday.
At the start of play – which kicked off in 32C heat – only WACA members were allowed to sit in the top level of Perth’s $1.2 billion facility.
A policy, made in conjunction with stadium operator VenuesLive, which appears likely to remain in place for the rest of the Test, barring a significant spike in ticket sales.
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Only six people could be seen in the fifth tier outside the members area during the first session, with the Mercury nudging 36C. The UV index on Thursday is 13 – a figure deemed extreme.
Entrances to the stands have been barricaded by black ribbons, while security guards continue to roam the top deck.
CA’s stance comes after WA premier Mark McGowan urged the sporting body to reconsider.
“In my view, when it’s 38C out there – and it’ll be even hotter than that inside the stadium – giving people the opportunity to sit in the shade seems a no-brainer,” McGowan said yesterday.
“I don’t know the reason, I’ve been told it might be because it looks better on TV. But look — 38C, it seems sensible to let people sit in the shade when there are all-shaded areas there. I would encourage Cricket Australia just to allow people to do that.”
Temperatures are expected to dip into the 20s from Saturday through Tuesday.
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