No fans allowed in for India's tour of South Africa due to surging COVID-19 cases

By Sports Desk December 20, 2021

No spectators will be allowed in to watch India's tour of South Africa due to a soaring number of coronavirus cases.

Six days before the Test series starts at Supersport Park, Cricket South Africa (CSA) revealed matches will be staged behind closed doors in order to protect the players.

The Proteas and India will play three Tests and as many ODIs without fans in attendance.

A CSA statement said: "Cricket South Africa (CSA) has noted the interests of cricket fans and other stakeholders on the scheduling and the release of the details of ticket sales, in connection with the forthcoming India vs Proteas tour that is scheduled to begin in less than a week.

"Regrettably, CSA wishes to inform the most ardent fans of cricket as well as all sports lovers that owing to the increasing COVID cases around the world, and the fourth wave locally, the two cricketing bodies have taken a joint decision to protect the players and the tour by NOT making tickets available for the India vs Proteas offerings.

"This decision was taken in order to avoid any breaches that could compromise the tour from a COVID-risk perspective and to also maintain a hazard-free bubble environment."

Pholetsi Moseki, the CSA acting chief executive officer, said: "We acknowledge the interest expressed by the fans and other stakeholders on being able to return to stadiums and want to assure all cricket fans that this decision was not taken lightly, but was instead taken in the best interest of the game and in the interest of the health and safety of all patrons.

"Consequently, we urge all sport lovers to exercise absolute care, during these extraordinary times.

"I also wish to take this time to urge all South Africans to continue spreading the positive messages of VACCINATION, VACCINATION AND VACCINATION, because this is the only way that we can truly get our country back into its high economic activity, which will assist government to open up the economy and all its forms of economic activity, including allowing greater numbers of fans back into stadiums."

 

Related items

  • Bravo named Chennai Super Kings bowling coach after announcing IPL retirement Bravo named Chennai Super Kings bowling coach after announcing IPL retirement

    Dwayne Bravo has retired from the IPL as a player, and taken over a position as the bowling coach at Chennai Super Kings.

    "I'm looking forward to this new journey because it's something I see myself doing after my playing days is fully over," Bravo, 39, said in a franchise statement on Friday.

    "I enjoy working with bowlers, and it's a role I'm excited about. From player to coach, I don't think I have to adjust much, because while I'm playing, I always work with bowlers and try to come up with plans and ideas on how to have that one step ahead of the batsmen.

    "The only difference is I will no longer be standing at mid-on or mid-off! I never thought I would be the leading wicket taker in the history of IPL. But I'm just happy to be a part of IPL history!"

    Bravo has played the IPL every year since it started in 2008 except in 2017, when an injury prevented him from turning out for Gujarat Lions. He had first been signed up by Mumbai Indians in 2008, and was with the team for three seasons before being bought by Super Kings at the 2011 auction. When Super Kings were suspended for two seasons - 2016 and 2017 - Bravo was picked by Lions, before being retained by Super Kings in 2018.

    He finished with 183 wickets, the highest wicket-taker after 15 seasons of IPL, 13 more than the second-placed Lasith Malinga, and 17 more than the next active bowler with the most success: Yuzvendra Chahal. Bravo's wickets came at an economy rate of 8.38 over 158 innings in 161 games, with a best of 4 for 22. He also scored 1560 runs at a strike rate of 129.57.

    One of the great death bowlers in the T20 game, Bravo bowled 1115 balls [36% of all his deliveries] between overs 17 and 20 and took 102 wickets in the phase. No-one else has bowled as many deliveries in the last four overs (Jasprit Bumrah is next with 1026) or taken as many wickets (Lasith Malinga is second on 90).

    A part of West Indies' golden generation of T20 superstars, which won the T20 World Cup in 2012 and 2016, Bravo joins his long-time international team-mate into IPL retirement, while getting into coaching roles with their teams. Pollard announced his retirement as a player on November 15, and has joined Mumbai Indians, the team he was with throughout his career in the IPL, as a batting coach.

    Like Pollard, Bravo hasn't quit as a player altogether. He is currently playing in the Abu Dhabi T10 with Delhi Bulls and has also been signed up by MI Emirates for the inaugural ILT20 in the UAE next year, where Pollard will be his captain. He was one of eight players Super Kings released by the retention deadline last month. At the time, though, it seemed like they might buy him back at the next auction, scheduled for December 23, as they had in 2021.

    With Super Kings, the team he became an integral part of - synonymous almost - over the years, Bravo played 144 matches, picking up 168 wickets and scoring 1556 runs. He was involved in three of their four IPL triumphs - in 2011, 2018 and 2021; the only one he missed was in 2010, when he was still with Mumbai. While with Super Kings, he won the Purple Cap for the most wickets in 2013 (32 wickets) and 2015 (26 wickets). He remains one of two players - Bhuvneshwar Kumar is the other - to win the Purple Cap on two occasions.

    "He has been a crucial member of the Super Kings family for more than a decade, and we are excited to continue the association," Kasi Viswanathan, the Super Kings chief executive, said. "Bravo's vast experience will be of immense value to our players and support staff. We are confident that our bowling group will thrive under his guidance."

  • Jones 'feels sad' for Woodward after call for England 'scrutiny' Jones 'feels sad' for Woodward after call for England 'scrutiny'

    England head coach Eddie Jones has hit back after criticism from Clive Woodward.

    The team's former head coach called for England's situation – including Jones' position – to be "scrutinised" should they fail to beat Scotland in next year's Six Nations opener.

    England suffered a 27-13 defeat to world champions South Africa on Saturday, having also recently been beaten by Argentina at Twickenham, with doubts growing over their credentials ahead of the 2023 Rugby World Cup following a poor showing during the Autumn internationals.

    With just one win in November against Japan, England's schedule concluded with a loss to a Springboks team missing key European-based players.

    Woodward led England to the 2003 Rugby World Cup crown and he believes Jones' position should be under threat ahead of the latest Rugby Football Union (RFU) review, writing in his Daily Mail column: "England are not just losing, they are going backwards at an alarming rate of knots.

    "A full and totally transparent review must be done immediately to look into where the team are at. As head coach, Eddie Jones has serious questions to answer. Everything must be scrutinised."

     

    Speaking to Men's Health UK, Jones issued a sharp response, claiming he is currently at the peak of his coaching powers.

    "I feel sad for him [Woodward]," he said. "If that is the best thing he has to do in his life, then he hasn't a lot to do.

    "I'm 62 now and I think in pure coaching terms I am coaching better than I ever have. Results aren't always perfect, but I'm happy with how I have been coaching.

    "After this, I want to do something really meaningful. I've enjoyed England a lot, it was a bit of a rescue job at the start, now rebuilding, and I am confident I will leave things in good shape."

    Jones has already said he will leave the role after next year's World Cup.

  • Shafique and Imam give Pakistan strong start in reply to England's mammoth 657 all out Shafique and Imam give Pakistan strong start in reply to England's mammoth 657 all out

    Abdullah Shafique and Imam-ul-Haq gave Pakistan a great start in their reply to England's record-breaking exploits with the bat on day two of the first Test.

    Zak Crawley, Ben Duckett, Ollie Pope and Harry Brook scored centuries as the tourists piled on the runs on a historic first day in Rawalpindi Cricket Stadium.

    After resuming on a staggering 506-4 in their first Test in Pakistan for almost 17 years, England posted 657 all out from 101 overs on Friday - Brook top scoring with 153 off 116 balls and taking a record 27 off an over.

    Imam (90 not out) and Shafique (89no) then cashed in on a flat wicket, taking Pakistan to 181 without loss at the close on another gruelling day for the bowlers - trailing by 476 runs.

    Ben Stokes hit the first ball of the day he faced from Naseem Shah (3-140) down the ground for six, but was cleaned up off the final delivery of an eventful opening over of the day.

    Liam Livingstone fell cheaply, but Brook continued to show his class, brutally taking Zahid Mahmood (4-235) apart before he was removed by Naseem.

    Ollie Robinson (37) and Will Jacks (30) also chipped in, but there was no joy for England with the ball as Imam and Shafique played superbly in control knocks.

    Stand-in wicketkeeper Pope appeared to have put down a chance to dismiss Imam for 11 and caught Shafique when he had 54 to his name, but the opener was given a reprieve after a replay showed the ball bounced before lodging in his glove.

    A concern for England would be the loss of Livingstone to an ankle injury that kept the all-rounder off the field and prevented him from bowling.

    The brilliance of Brook

    Making only his second Test appearance, Brook carried on where he left off on day one in a masterful knock as England made their second-highest Test score overseas.

    He brutally took debutant Zahid apart to break a record of 24, which he shared with Ian Botham for less than a day after matching that on Thursday, for the most runs scored by an England batter in a Test over.

    Brook struck Zahid for two sixes and three fours before scoring three off the final ball of that incredible over. He only faced 115 balls in the fastest 150 by an England player in the longest format and the fourth-quickest in Test history, hitting five sixes and 19 fours.

    Shafique and Imam build strong foundations

    After such a punishing time in the field, Shafique and Imam were able to enjoy themselves at the crease in a run-fest.

    England had the odd half chance, but the openers looked comfortable as they saw off the new ball with apparent ease and were closing in on centuries at the close.

© 2022 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.