Cricket-India to play three tests in South Africa

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FILE PHOTO: ICC Cricket World Cup - South Africa v India

CAPE TOWN (Reuters) - India will play matches across all three formats on their tour of South Africa, starting with a three-match test series that begins in Johannesburg on Dec. 17, in a much-needed boost to the coffers of the cash-strapped host nation.

There will also be a Boxing Day test in Pretoria (Dec. 26-30) and a New Year’s match in Cape Town (Jan 3-7), with a limited number of vaccinated spectators expected to be allowed into the venues.

Current government legislation allows for 2,000 fans into sporting stadia, but the path of the COVID-19 pandemic in the country over the coming month will determine if that number is increased or scrapped altogether.

Figures for new cases are currently among the lowest since the start of the pandemic.

The teams will stay in the Western Cape for the limited overs matches, with three One-Day Internationals between Jan. 11-16 in Paarl and Cape Town, and four Twenty20 clashes from Jan. 19-26 at the same two venues.

"Cricket South Africa is excited to welcome India back to South Africa, which also significantly marks the 30th anniversary of South Africa’s first tour to India after re-entry into International Cricket in 1991. This tour affirms our unique relationship with the BCCI," CSA Director of Cricket Graeme Smith, said in a media release on Friday.

CSA has been hit hard by a number of tour cancellations since the start of the pandemic, not least a proposed visit by Australia this year that was postponed indefinitely in February.

India tour schedule in South Africa

Dec 17-21 First test Wanderers, Johannesburg

Dec 26-30 Second test Centurion Park, Pretoria

Jan 3-7 Third test Newlands, Cape Town

Jan 11 First ODI Boland Park, Paarl

Jan 14 Second ODI Newlands, Cape Town

Jan 16 Third ODI Newlands, Cape Town

Jan 19 First T20 Newlands, Cape Town

Jan 21 Second T20 Newlands, Cape Town

Jan 23 Third T20 Boland Park, Paarl

Jan 26 Fourth T20 Boland Park, Paarl

(Reporting by Nick Said; Editing by Toby Davis)

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