Melbourne, March 17 (IANS) New South Wales have been declared champions of the Sheffield Shield after Cricket Australia decided to cancel all cricketing activities for the remainder of the season due to coronavirus outbreak.
New South Wales had 51 points from nine games with six wins and had already booked their place in the final scheduled for March 27. The next best team was Victoria with three wins, three losses and three draws for 38 points.
"By effectively cancelling the remainder of our season, Cricket Australia is playing its part in protecting fans, players, staff, volunteers and match officials during this unprecedented global health issue," Kevin Roberts, the Chief Executive, said. "These are difficult decisions, but the right ones in the circumstances.
"Many will no doubt be disappointed that the Sheffield Shield, Premier Cricket and Community Cricket seasons won't have their traditional ending. That said, we congratulate New South Wales who were 12 points clear at the top of the table on being crowned Sheffield Shield champions.
"As organisations around the world rally to slow the spread of the coronavirus, it's important that we also provide decisive leadership. We hope that by taking these actions now - in addition to those announced in recent days - we can contribute to 'flattening the curve' of coronavirus and society returning to normal as quickly as possible."
The rapid spread of the disease has led to the sporting calendar around the world come to a virtual standstill. The Australian cricket team's ODI series against New Zealand was called off, as was India's ODI series against South Africa. Both series were to be held in empty stadiums before being called off altogether.