New Delhi: The England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) will make an announcement later in the week on the future of the Ashes scheduled to be played in December this year in Australia and in a scenario where the England team refuses to tour down under, the Australian cricket board is staring at a financial loss of close to Australian Dollars (AUD) 200.

With the England players reluctant to undergo resort-style quarantine for themselves and their families for the upcoming Ashes that includes five Test matches, any boycott would leave a 200 million-dollar black hole in Australia cricket’s finances, according to a report in the Sydney Morning Herald.

“About AUD100 million of that would be as a direct impact on the Australian broadcast rights deal with Channel Seven and Fox, while sponsorship, overseas broadcast rights, and ticket sales would make up the bulk of the remainder.

“International, state, and Big Bash male and female cricketers receive roughly a quarter of Australian cricket income, with a large chunk of the remaining AUD 150m earmarked for grassroots cricket,” the report stated.

The ECB board is likely to meet later this week to determine whether this winter’s Ashes can take place, after appearing to concede that several of the team’s leading players remain unwilling to submit to Australia’s stringent Covid-19 protocols.

In a statement issued on Monday morning, the ECB said that it had been in discussions with England men’s players and management — some of whom will be departing for the UAE later the same day ahead of this month’s T20 World Cup.

(With IANS Inputs)