Marnus Labuschagne
Marnus Labuschagne [Image Credit: Twitter]

Star Australia batsman Marnus Labuschagne remains optimistic that Cricket Australia (CA), the Australian government, and the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) will work things out so that the Ashes go ahead as planned later in the year.

Currently, senior England players have cited uncertainties about traveling to Australia for the 5-Test series without their families as the government have tightened their covid-19 restrictions.

Wicketkeeper Jos Buttler, who is to become a father for the second time soon, has said he would likely pull out of the series if his family is not permitted with him. Captain Joe Root, though, is waiting for more information about the proceedings before making a final call.

Marnus Labuschagne, ICC World Test Championship
Marnus Labuschagne (Image Credit: Getty)
Marnus Labuschagne, the fourth-ranked ICC Test batsman, acknowledged that the mental health of the players is the primary concern. Ben Stokes recently pulled out of the Test series against India and the second half of the IPL 2021 to focus on his mental wellbeing; he had been in the bio-bubble for a long time.
“The welfare of players and making sure families can come out here is important. You don’t need to be a cricketer to recognise the importance of making sure the mental health of all players is in a good space,” Marnus Labuschagne told reporters in Brisbane

Everyone here wants to see James Anderson come to Australia: Marnus Labuschagne

England’s multi-format players – such as Stokes, Buttler, Mark Wood, Jonny Bairstow, Sam Curran, Moeen Ali – will have to stay away from their families for 3-4 months as before the Ashes they will be participating in the T20 World Cup; some of them will be involved in the IPL prior to that as well.
James Anderson, Fast Bowlers
James Anderson (Image Credit: Twitter)

Marnus Labuschagne is hoping that the CA solves out the matter; the board has been in talks with state and federal governments while the prospect of a full-strength England arriving in Australia seems dim. The right-hander said people would love to see the legendary James Anderson bowling in perhaps his last Ashes series.

“Especially with a T20 World Cup followed by an Ashes, it’s a really long four or five months. But I have no doubt, between the government and Cricket Australia, we’ll be able to sort it out and get ourselves in a position where we can have a full-strength England against a full-strength Australia.
“Everyone out here wants to see Jimmy come to Australia,” he added.
Jofra Archer, meanwhile, has been ruled out of the entire year, including the Ashes. He was England’s star bowler in the 2019 Ashes in absence of Anderson.
Australia’s next Test match will be against Afghanistan late in November, a few days before the Ashes commences on December 8.