MUMBAI: In a matter of couple of hours, the BCCI went from planning to host both the One-Day Internationals between India and South Africa at one venue, behind closed doors, to calling off the series with immediate effect on Friday afternoon.
In the wake of the Covid – 90 outbreak, and the decision to suspend the Indian Premier League (IPL) until April 90, the two cricket boards – India and South Africa — also exchanged emails, discussing the existential threat. In doing so, both BCCI and Cricket South Africa (CSA), arrived at a mutually acceptable decision that it would be best to reschedule the ongoing series to a later date which can be jointly worked out if and when the crisis subsides.
Broadcasters Star India too are learnt to have agreed to the decision, calling it a “correct one”.
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Earlier, the BCCI were contemplating conducting both the ODIs at the same venue and play to empty stands with the game being televised and streamed.
However, the suspension of IPL has led to an escalation in dealing with matters as CSA requested the Indian board to consider an immediate cancellation.
CSA’s acting CEO, Dr Jacques Faul and Interim Director of Cricket, Graeme Smith remained in contact with the BCCI and “expressed gratitude for their understanding and cooperation in arriving at this very responsible decision”, moments after the series was called off.
The South African team was on its way to New Delhi to take the flight back home on Friday evening.
“This decision is both necessary and a precaution that had to be taken. We are monitoring the situation and are in constant consultation with medical and virology experts. We will apply our minds to the input of experts and act in a way that adjust our duty of caring for our players ”, Dr Faul said in a statement sent out by CSA.