Chennai: In view of the illness of 10 South African players, the schedule of the cricket tri-series has been reworked with the South Africa A and Australia A match to be held tomorrow, while the final league game will be played on August 13 at the MA Chidambaram Stadium here.
The rescheduling was done at the last moment as Media Officer of the BCCI in Southern India Dr. Baba informed about the changes and confirmed that the final would happen on August 14, a day after the India A-South Africa A clash. "All the South African players since having been discharged from hospital requested for one day's rest tomorrow," read Dr. Baba's WhatsApp message yesterday.
Later Dr.Baba told PTI that extending a day's rest today as based on the South African team's request as all 10 Proteas players were discharged around noon yesterday. The changes in match schedule would mean that today, instead of August 13, would be a 'rest day' and there would no cricket activity in respect of the tri-series.
South Africa A's one-day match against Australia A, who have already booked their final berth, has been postponed for the second time. Earlier South Africa A had requested India A coach Rahul Dravid to stand in for them against Australia A on August 10 due to the hospitalisation of the players.
Dravid accepted the visitors' request as India A went down to Australia A by three wickets and the Usman Khawaja-led side sealed their final berth.
In a series of events, four South African players were admitted to a city hospital due to "food poisoning" before their Sunday game against India A, while six more players took to the sick bed after the tri-series game on Sunday. Opener Quinton de Kock, who hit 108 in his side's eight- wicket loss, was rushed to a city hospital after the game, while three others were also hospitalised during the course of the match.
"With half of the squad going down ill overnight South Africa was forced to play (against India A today) an ill- balanced starting XI that had only four frontline bowlers with the likes of Dean Elgar and Khaya Zondo to make up the rest of the overs," the Cricket South Africa had said in a release.
The plight of the South African side was understandable when India A team's 12th man Mandeep Singh came in to field after de Kock suffered a hamstring pull.
Even before that South Africa A's video analyst Hendrikus Coertzen was seen fielding in place of left-arm seamer Mthokozisi Shezi, who had fallen ill.