Cricket Australia’s (CA) chief executive Kevin Roberts has revealed the organisation has already suffered an estimated £10.2m (AUS $20m) financial hit due to COVID-19.
Speaking to The Guardian, Roberts revealed that due to the ongoing coronavirus outbreak and sporting postponements, CA could face losses in the ‘hundreds of millions of dollars’, particularly if India’s tour of Australia in October doesn’t take place.
The chief executive stated: “The unfortunate reality of that is we’re estimating that we have taken a $20m impact thus far. And we have to anticipate, given the unknown and fast-moving nature of this situation, that there will be more risks than that $20m.
“On one level, cricket is fortunate in terms of the time of year when the coronavirus situation hit. On another level, cricket is unfortunate in that it has hit us at the lowest point of our four-year cash cycle.”
CA’s priority will be to stabilise the organisation’s finances, with options such as hosting an additional Test against India in one city without spectators a possible option.
The organisation will also be frantically examining how to host October and November’s 2020 ICC Men’s T20 World Cup, with empty stadium matches being considered so International Cricket Council’s (ICC) broadcast rights can still be completed.
Roberts added: “We might not generate financial returns from that event that are as significant as the international cricket season. But what we do know is that the bigger returns from the broadcast rights around the event that are generated by the ICC are very important to all of our counterparts around the cricket world.
“So it’s incumbent on us to do everything possible to stage and host the T20 World Cup.”
CA is among a multitude of teams, leagues and organisations which have introduced cost-cutting measures to ensure that the deprecated revenue gains do not severely affect its companies.
This month the Australian sporting body furloughed the majority of its staff despite the bulk of its 2019-20 season being concluded due to COID-19 disrupting CA’s commercial partnerships and revenue streams.