India to play three Tests in South Africa as both boards reach an agreement

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India to play three Tests in South Africa as both boards reach an agreement

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SportsCafe Desk


India will play three Test matches in South Africa early next year as both the cricket boards finally reached a compromise after prolonged discussions and planning. The revised schedule will see the Proteas having their busiest Test summer so far, with a total of 10 Test matches.

It was hinted on Tuesday that India are likely to see a full tour of South Africa despite grueling schedule for both the sides and the boards of both countries finally revealed the details on Wednesday.

The revised schedule sees India playing three Tests, six ODIs and three T20I matches between January and March. The first Test will be played on January 5 while the dates of the remaining games are yet to be announced.

Haroon Lorgat, the chief executive of Cricket South Africa had stated the necessity "to compromise to some extent" in order to fit in a tour between the end of India's series against Sri Lanka on December 24, and the start of a Test series between South Africa and Australia on March 1.

However, the small duration has forced the sides to slash the Test matches and increase the number of ODIs instead. "The time constraints faced by India have forced us to reduce the Test matches to three while increasing white ball cricket to six ODIs and three T20I matches," said Lorgat.

The original idea was for four Tests, three one-day internationals and three Twenty20 Internationals. Cricket South Africa had wanted the first Test against India to begin on December 26 this year as their traditional Boxing Day game, but India decided to spend some time in South Africa before rushing into a series just after finishing with Sri Lanka.

Hence, India will play a two-day practice match in Paarl on December 30 and 31, while South Africa will play Zimbabwe in Port Elizabeth in a four-day Test match from December 26 to 29, which will be the first day-night Test in the country.

"It will be the first-ever four-day day-night Test match and hopefully we will get International Cricket Council approval at their meeting in October to have an official Test match played over four days,” said Lorgat.

South Africa will play a total of ten Test matches this year- two against Bangladesh, one against Zimbabwe, three against India and four against Australia, which makes it their busiest Test summer so far.

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