The Gabba will host this week's day-night Test between Australia and Pakistan.
The Gabba will host this week's day-night Test between Australia and Pakistan. DAVE HUNT

Gabba to host Ashes opener next summer

CRICKET: The Gabba will take back hosting rights to the opening Test of the summer when the Ashes is contested in Australia next season.

The ground is being readied for the day-night first Test between Australia and Pakistan, but only after Perth, Hobart and Adelaide were the venues for the recently completed series with South Africa.

And notably, the opening Test will not be staged until November 23, meaning Australian players will get at least three Sheffield Shield matches to tune up for their battle with England.

This year they had one before taking on the Proteas - a much-maligned decision by Cricket Australia as the hosts were crushed in the opening two matches.

CA also announced Adelaide Oval would host a pink-ball Test between December 2-6 - the first Ashes match to to be played under lights.

The third Ashes Test will be held in Perth from December 14, at either the traditional WACA ground or the new Perth Stadium if it is completed in time. The new ground will have a capacity of 60,000.

"The decision to start the international season in Brisbane, then moving to Adelaide, allows us to give Perth Stadium the best chance to host the Test match, so we can welcome an even bigger crowd to Perth next summer,” CA chief executive James Sutherland said.

"We're really excited to announce that Adelaide will play host to the first ever day-night Ashes Test.

"We know how much Adelaide fans love this style of Test cricket. We're expecting a full house next year in what is sure to be a great contest.”

England will get its first taste of pink-ball cricket against the West Indies at Edgbaston in August.

2017-18 ASHES SERIES

First Test: Gabba - November 23-27, 2017

Second Test: Adelaide Oval (Day-Night) - December 2-6, 2017

Third Test: Perth (venue TBC) - December 14-18, 2017

Fourth Test: MCG - December 26-30, 2017

Fifth Test: SCG - January 4-8, 2018



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