Cricket

Lucknow and Kolkata ODIs called off

The first match between India and South Africa was washed out in Dharamsala

The first match between India and South Africa was washed out in Dharamsala   | Photo Credit: R.V. Moorthy

South Africa to visit India at a later date to play three matches

After a washout of the seriesopener at Dharamshala on Thursday, the remaining two One-Day Internationals involving India and South Africa were cancelled as a precautionary measure against COVID-19 pandemic.

The BCCI took the decision to call off the matches at Lucknow (March 15) and Kolkata (March 18) on Friday evening, hours after the teams landed here by a chartered flight from Dharamshala.

Also read: Coronavirus | Sports Ministry tells sports bodies, including BCCI, to keep away crowds

The statement, issued by BCCI secretary Jay Shah, read: “The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI), along with Cricket South Africa (CSA), on Friday announced to reschedule the ongoing ODI series in view of the COVID-19 outbreak. Cricket South Africa will visit India at a later date to play three ODIs. The BCCI-CSA will jointly work out the revised schedule.”

Speculations surrounding the possibility of the BCCI calling off the ODI series were rife since Thursday afternoon following its announcement of holding the ODI at Lucknow without spectators. This was in keeping with the health advisory from the Union Government

What must have also prompted the BCCI to cancel the ODIs was Friday’s decision of the Uttar Pradesh Government to invoke the Epidemic Act, after 11 cases of Coronavirus were reported in the State. This meant, over 500 people, including players, match officials, security personnel, media persons and those representing various stakeholders, had to be quarantined before being allowed inside the stadium.

On its part, the Uttar Pradesh Cricket Association (UPCA) was contemplating issuing fresh accreditation card on match-day even to the commentators and media persons, holding BCCI’s central accreditation.

In the afternoon, unseasonal rain lashed the city and overcast weather gave rise to conversations around the possibility of a rain-curtailed match on Sunday, if not another washout like the one seen at Dharamshala. But before the day ended, BCCI’s decision to call off the ODIs laid all speculations to rest.

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Printable version | Jul 5, 2020 10:51:56 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/sport/cricket/coronavirus-india-south-africa-series-called-off-due-to-covid-19-threat/article31061061.ece

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