Arun Dhumal: No commitment to tour SA

Updated: May 23, 2020, 07:18 IST | PTI | New Delhi

BCCI treasurer Arun Dhumal denies Cricket South Africa's claims that India have confirmed travelling there to play three T20Is in August.

Virat Kohli
Virat Kohli

The BCCI has not made "any commitment" to tour South Africa in August and there have only been discussions about such a possibility, Board treasurer Arun Dhumal said on Friday, denying Cricket South Africa's claims of a confirmation. CSA Director of Cricket Graeme Smith and Chief Executive Jacques Faul on Thursday said that India has agreed to tour the rainbow nation for three T20 Internationals in August, signalling resumption of cricket in the post COVID-19 world. But Dhumal disagreed.

"When South Africa's tour of India got cancelled due to Coronavirus, we had discussions that if there is a possibility, we will make an effort to tour South Africa. But at no point have we made any commitment to Cricket South Africa about touring in August," Dhumal told PTI in an exclusive interaction.

Govt clearance needed

The senior BCCI office-bearer then said that unless the government clears international travel, BCCI won't be in a position to make a commitment to any country. "Right now, we can't even commit that we can tour Sri Lanka in July followed by [short T20 series] in Zimbabwe. Both these tours are part of the FTP programme and we are still not sure what the situation will be in two months, so how can we commit on South Africa tour?" Dhumal asked.

Arun Dhumal
Arun Dhumal

However, a BCCI veteran who has interacted with Nenzani, said that the cash-strapped Proteas should only get a commitment if it backs the BCCI view on ICC policies. "We will definitely play SA series but there should be riders. Is CSA with India on ICC policy matters?" he said.

Camp in Dharamsala?

With the civil aviation ministry announcing that domestic flights will be starting from May 25, Dhumal said the Board could explore safe zone options for a national camp in case it can't be held at the National Cricket Academy in Bangalore.

Will it make Dharamsala an option considering that HPCA now has a state of the art indoor stadium? "Since it's my state association, I would never, from my end, push it but if after exploring options, BCCI finds that Dharamsala can have a camp, I am more than ready to make all the arrangements," Dhumal said.

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