CSA Frustrated With BCCI Over Unconfirmed Dates For Series
With dates yet to be confirmed for the South Africa-India series, Cricket South Africa (CSA) president Chris Nenzani has expressed his frustration over the uncertainty surrounding the series in summer.
India were scheduled to tour the African country at the end of the year with the series slated to start from December 26 but the initial plans have now been put in a limbo after the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) agreeing to host a return series against Sri Lanka that is set to end in the third week of December. Moreover, with the Indian board adamant on having at least a 10-day gap for the team in order to help the players get accustomed to the conditions, the Boxing Day Test is no more a part of the itinerary. In fact, the New Year Test is also in doubt.
“Obviously it is frustrating and it is a matter we need to engage,” Nenzani said. “It is an issue that we need to put finality to because the issue of scheduling and putting schedules together comes naturally. We’ve agreed on content and the issue is now how do we fit in that content.”
“It’s a very frustrating experience but we’re always hopeful that we can find something workable. If you don’t have a centrally controlled Future Tours Programme‚ these issues are going to come up. But if the International Cricket Council promotes test cricket‚ you have to give everybody a fair chance and also their place in the sun,” he added.
According to the Future Tours Programme (FTP), Sri Lanka, who will be visiting India for a full-fledged series for the first time since 2009, were initially scheduled to tour India in March 2018 but their plans of holding a one-day series in their country on the occasion of their 50th independence made them change their minds.
This is not the first time that a bilateral series between the two countries has invited unnecessary problems. Four years ago, India had cut fulfilled its FTP obligations by playing a curtailed series due to the frosty relation with CSA.
Meanwhile, Haroon Lorgat, CEO of CSA, has confirmed that there would be no Boxing Day Test but the traditional New Year’s test will take place.
“There will be a New Year’s test but it’s the starting date that is the issue. That’s what the board is currently discussing at the moment. We want to go back to India and try to appeal to them to respect the start date that we would like. Let us engage with them and let’s see how they respond but this is something that we believe is important is to retain the test match starting date‚ especially in the view of the current climate where we want to promote test cricket,” said Lorgat.
“We should have had finality a while back because we want to have the dates announced and want to get the promotion out of the way. It is the Freedom Trophy that we’re talking about and how many people actually know about the Mandela-Gandhi series. There’s lots that should have been done by now but this is the reality of the pressures of the calendar. The content is not an issue‚ it’s just about getting the dates locked in to schedule the content,” he added.
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