Fans tee off at ICC over extremely late start time for Australia’s Perth T20WC match

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Ausstralia’s T20 World Cup defence is back on track after a seven-wicket win over Sri Lanka in Perth… but the late-night fixture has been swiftly condemned by fans across the country.

With Perth three hours behind Australian Eastern Daylight time (AEDT), the current time zone for Victoria, NSW and Tasmania, as well as two hours behind Queensland’s time and two and a half behind South Australia, the 7pm start time in the Western Australian capital meant the match actually began as late as 10pm elsewhere.

In Melbourne and Sydney, supporters needed to burn the midnight oil to watch their team secure victory, with Australia wrapping up the win just before 1:30am (AEDT).

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Unsurprisingly, the scheduling choice was met with staunch criticism on social media, with fans taking to Twitter to condemn the ICC.

Several more matches this World Cup are scheduled for the late hours in eastern Australia, with Pakistan and Zimbabwe playing in an identical timeslot on Thursday night and India and South Africa doing likewise on Sunday.

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However, the presence of host nation Australia in this match has caused particular consternation – especially given the fact that, as a school night, few if any children could watch the match through to completion.

However, some fans opted to see the positives out of the late finish…

… while others were more critical of the patchy crowd at Optus Stadium, given Western Australia’s closing of their borders for much of the COVID-19 pandemic saw an Ashes Test taken from them in last summer’s series.

Typically, major sporting fixtures in Perth start at an earlier hour than is normal in eastern states due to the time difference; for instance, AFL matches at Optus Stadium usually have their first bounce at 6:10pm local time, ensuring a start at 8:10pm on the opposite side of the country.

Even Perth fans were unimpressed by the late start, citing the difficulty in getting to and from the ground at a late hour as a primary reason behind the low crowd.

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