Domestic cricket put on hold in South Africa after national team players get exposed to COVID-19 

Ten of the players selected to face Sri Lanka in the Tests are now under Coronavirus scare.

CSA announced the domestic cricket suspension for until next month | GettyCricket South Africa (CSA) has put the ongoing domestic season on hold after as many as 10 of the 16 men selected for the first Test against Sri Lanka were exposed to the dangerous Coronavirus. 

CSA, taking note of the second wave of the pandemic within the country, announced on Thursday (December 17) that no domestic matches will be played until next month. 

Read Also: "No chance Australia will go to South Africa," Vaughan concerned about CSA's bio-bubble arrangements

Three four-day first-class games were due to start from Sunday 

"Five squad members were in a match between the Dolphins and Titans which was abandoned after one day on Monday when a Dolphins player tested positive," reported AFP

"Another five Test squad members played in a match between the Eagles and Lions which was completed on Wednesday despite a Lions player testing positive on the third day of the game."

"The only Test squad players who either did not play last weekend or who played in a third match not affected by Covid-19 are captain Quinton de Kock, former captain Faf du Plessis, batsmen Temba Bavuma and Kyle Verreynne, and fast bowlers Anrich Nortje and Glenton Stuurman."

The Test series against Sri Lanka kicks-off with the Boxing Day Test in Centurion on December 26. But before that, all the players will have to give a negative test and only then they will be allowed into the series' bio-secure bubble. 

The selected Test squad is due to assemble on Saturday (December 19), confirmed Victor Mpitsang, the convener of selectors. 

"All the players will be tested before going into the bubble," he was quoted saying in the AFP report, informing also that some players may have a delayed entry into the bubble depending on medical advice. 

Graeme Smith, the former skipper and CSA's director of cricket, said the decision to postpone domestic cricket has been taken keeping in mind the health of players and all else involved. 

"CSA is committed to mitigating the impact of COVID-19 on the 2020/21 season, with the upcoming two-match Test series between South Africa and Sri Lanka being played in a bio-secure environment, which is a more controlled space than the domestic competition," said Smith in a statement. 

The suspension of fixtures means domestic players have a mid-season break on their hands before the List A tournament, which is scheduled to begin on January 8. 


By Kashish Chadha - 18 Dec, 2020

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