Sydney: Sydney Weather declined significantly after the smoke emerging from the bushfires consumed the area surrounding the eastern coast of Australia.

The Air Quality Index (AQI) also reached an alarming level in the city, cautioning several Australian players of the hazardous air quality in India.

Amid such weather, New South Wales (NSW) and Queensland completed their Sheffield Shield match at the Sydney Cricket Ground on Tuesday.

While the game ended in New South Wales’ favour, their left-arm off-spinner Steve O’Keefe was alarmed by the weather condition in which the match was played as he said the air quality as “far worse than India” and “shocking”.

“That air quality was appalling. The doctor was serious and speaking to us about it, and the fact the game wasn’t going to go all day was considered, but in the future, they need to look at it because it’s not healthy for us – it’s toxic.

That was far worse than India,” Steve O’Keefe was seen as saying by espncricinfo.com. NSW won the match by nine wickets to go on top of the points table with five wins and a draw after six games.

Another Australian international Usman Khawaja, who leads the Queensland side, said that the air quality reminds him of “playing in India”.

“When we arrived here this morning I was reminded of playing in India,” Khawaja said, comparing Sydney’s weather to India’s air quality. Despite characterising the conditions as adverse to play in, he didn’t rate it as totally “unplayable”.

“It was just hard to breathe because there was a lot of smoke. I was only out there for close to five overs, but it just got stuck in your throat. I was taken aback, and the bowlers were bowling for that long, I thought they would have taken out of it.

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It was bad, but it was not unplayable,” Khawaja reacted to air quality. NSW all-rounder Moises Henriques has arbitrated the Man of the Match for his game-changing knock of 116 runs.

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