In what comes as another blow to England’s tour of South Africa, the second ODI between the teams, scheduled for December 7, has been postponed.
The decision was made because two players in the England camp are still awaiting confirmation of their positive COVID-19 test results. The names of the athletes have not been revealed.
The postponement comes close on the heels of the abandonment of the 1st ODI.
The opening match of the three-game series was supposed to be played on Friday but was postponed after one of the South African players tested positive for the virus.
A new schedule was agreed upon by the two boards but the first match had to be called off when 2 hotel staff tested positive a few hours before the play began.
Our 2nd ODI with South Africa will not take place on Monday 7 December.
— England Cricket (@englandcricket) December 6, 2020
Complete testing of the touring England party had ensued, and two of them are now “unconfirmed” positive cases who await independent verification of their results.
A joint statement from both boards read:
“The decision has been taken by Cricket South Africa (CSA) and the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) whilst they await the outcome of the independent ratification of the two unconfirmed positive COVID-19 tests from the England camp and the continued health and wellbeing of both playing groups.”
“Once the findings of this review have been received, CSA and ECB will then discuss how best to proceed concerning the remaining two matches of this ODI Series.”
Cricket South Africa (CSA) and the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) have agreed to cancel today’s Betway One-Day International series opening match, which was due to take place in Paarl.
#Proteas #SAvENG #BetwayODI #SeeUsOnThePitch pic.twitter.com/lGvo7NDgZo
— Cricket South Africa (@OfficialCSA) December 6, 2020
If the positive results are verified, the tour could be over. Confirmed cases will have to undergo strict quarantine in Cape Town. This might also lead to more players testing positive after contact tracing protocols are applied.
Some of the players in the squad are due to leave for the BBL 2020-21 in Australia. If the isolation here is added to the mandatory 14-day quarantine in Australia, England players will have to miss at least some games of BBL.