The England men’s Tour of South Africa has been confirmed with three IT20s and three ODIs taking place behind closed doors in Cape Town and Paarl from next month.
The England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) and Cricket South Africa (CSA) have agreed to biosecurity and travel plans for what will be the first international tour undertaken by an England cricket team since the COVID-19 pandemic began.
CSA approved the plans with the South African Government earlier this week granting exemptions for inbound travel for the England players and management.
Eoin Morgan’s squad will depart from London on a chartered flight on Monday 16 November. The touring party will be based in Cape Town. Ahead of the IT20 series, the squad will train at Western Province Cricket Club. They will play three intra-squad practice matches – two T20s and one 50-over game – before the series starts.
The three IT20s start on Friday 27 November at Newlands, Cape Town. The second match of the series will be played at Boland Park, Paarl on Sunday 29 November. Newlands will host the third match on Tuesday 1 December.
The three-match ODI series, which are part of the ICC Cricket World Cup Super League, starts at Newlands on Friday 4 December. The second match will be played at Boland Park on Sunday 6 December, and the final game of the tour will take place on Wednesday 9 December at Newlands.
Tom Harrison, ECB’s Chief Executive Officer, said: “We are looking forward to touring South Africa. I would like to personally thank Cricket South Africa for their efforts in ensuring this tour goes ahead and their diligent work to create an environment that is safe for our players and staff. They are working tirelessly to pull together a bio-secure plan in Cape Town and Paarl.
“We owe it to the sport that we do everything we can to keep international competition progressing during this pandemic.
“Series against the Proteas are always exciting and intense. We saw that earlier this year in South Africa and we can expect the same this time around.”
“This is a wonderful boost for cricket,” commented CSA Acting Chief Executive Kugandrie Govender
“The fact that England are the current World Cup champions will add tremendously to the two series and will give our own players every motivation to perform at their very best and challenge the acknowledged champions.
“I would like to express CSA’s appreciation and sincere gratitude to the South African Government – specifically the Departments of Sport, Arts & Culture; Home Affairs and Health – for the support they have given us to make this return to international cricket in our country a reality, while maintaining that health safety for all remains the number one priority.
“We are also very grateful to the England and Wales Cricket Board for the support they have given us in many areas and we will be able to draw on their own experiences and help in organising and running international cricket under bio-secure conditions.
“This is a first for us and we commit to learn quickly and with great responsiveness as we have an action-packed international season ahead of us.”
The National Selectors will confirm the England touring party early next month.