England’s tour to South Africa is reportedly set to take place as scheduled with the latter’s sports ministry giving the green light. The ongoing chaos in Cricket South Africa had put a question mark on the series. The issue was that CSA’s Members Council are yet to accept the interim management appointed by the South African government two weeks ago.
The CSA Members Council is made up of the 14 presidents of the provincial cricketing associations and is the leading decision-making group in CSA. If both the parties do not agree soon, South Africa will not have a official team to represent the country.
In such a case, there are speculations that South Africa’s home series against England is more than likely to be called off. With South African government threatening to intervene in the matter too, there is another reason that might make it tough for the country to host England.
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Despite the ongoing chaos in CSA, ESPNcricinfo has reported that England’s tour to South Africa remains green-lit by the country’s sports ministry, even as the minister, Nathi Mthethwa, is closer to intervening in the cricket board. The news outlet quoted a source saying that the series will be played “for the sake of the players and the cricket-loving public”.
But that does not mean South Africa’s sports ministry has left CSA off the hook. The report stated that there remains a strong chance of Mthethwa using the National Sports and Recreation Act to step in at CSA (which could include withdrawing funding and stripping them of their status as a nationally representative body) if the members’ council does not recognise the interim board.
Even if the members’ council fail to recognise the interim board ministerial action may not result in the England tour being called off. England are due to travel to South Africa on Monday to begin a 10-day quarantine. The visitors as well as South Africa are due to stay in a bio-secure bubble at the Vineyard Hotel in Cape Town.
All matches will be behind closed doors. The series will start on November 27 and will mark the resumption of international cricket for South Africa. The first T20I will take place on November 27. The second and third matches will be played on November 29 and December 1 before the ODI series starts.
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