Ashes 2021-22: Tim Paine claims Ashes will go again with or without Joe Root amid travel concerns

Jos Buttler and Joe Root are uncertain for Ashes tour | Getty Images

Australia Test captain Tim Paine said on Friday (October 1) that the Ashes 2021-22 will take place with or without England captain Joe Root after the Englishman has refused to commit to the tour until he receives more clarity on the COVID-19 quarantine rules.

Root, a father of two young children, said he is “desperate” to play in the Ashes 2021-22, but said it is “so hard to make a definite decision” until he gets clarity on Australia’s COVID-19 quarantine rules.

England’s vice-captain Jos Buttler also said that he will not travel to Australia for the Ashes if his family isn’t allowed to join him due to the tough border restrictions.

Well, Cricket Australia (CA) is currently negotiating with Canberra and England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) over what type of bio-bubble players may have to endure during the Ashes series and whether their families can travel to Australia for the high-profile Test series in December-January 2021.

Paine told SEN sports radio: “Well, the Ashes are going ahead — the first Test is on December 8 whether Joe’s here or not. They all want to come, there’s no doubt about it.”

The Test skipper added, “They’re trying to get themselves the best possible conditions they can, but at the end of the day, we all are. It will be worked out above us and then they’ll make a decision whether or not they’ll get on that plane.”

He also reacted to former England captain Kevin Pietersen’s remarks against traveling to Australia due to their “ridiculous quarantine rules” for the Ashes series, starting on December 8 in Brisbane.

Paine signed off by saying, “I think it’s been beat up and people like Kevin like to get themselves a little bit of exposure in the media whenever they can. There will be a squad of England players coming here for the first Test on December 8th.”