Cape Town: The Indian cricket team has opted for training sessions, instead of a warm-up fixture in South Africa.
A press release from Cricket South Africa on Monday announced India’s decision.
This means that India will not play any warm-up game and will directly face the South African cricket team in the first test in Cape Town from December 5.
Although, the Board of Cricket for Control in India (BCCI) did not give any reason officially for dropping the warm-up match, it is understood the request was made by the team management well in advance.
The board was told that the team management preferred to focus on training on their own, as soon as the Indian team lands in South Africa on December 28.
The BCCI wanted its players to take a short break before they departed for South Africa. South Africa will now play the traditional Boxing Test match against Zimbabwe on December 26, which would be a four-day affair.
Eventually, even the New Year’s Test, which is traditionally played from January 2 in Cape Town, was pushed back to January 5.
There had been some confusion over the schedule for India’s tour of South Africa, with both boards holding discussions since the beginning of the year.
Incidentally, in September, an official involved in the discussions told ESPNCricinfo that India would ‘definitely play one practice match before the first Test’.
India will tour South Africa for two months (January-February 2018) and will play three tests, six ODIs and three T20 Internationals. They are yet to win a series in South Africa. (ANI)