South Africa have withdrawn from their ODI leg of the Australia tour, Cricket Australia announced on Wednesday (July 13). The ODI series, which was to follow the three-match Test series, was scheduled to be played from January 12 to 17 next year.

Last month, CSA had requested to shift the dates of the ODI matches, but with a packed international calendar, there was no slot available to reschedule. By withdrawing from the series, the South African board has agreed to concede the points from the three-match ODI series to Australia, which was set to be part of the ongoing ICC Super League – the cut-off for which is May next year.

The decision stands to severely harm South Africa’s chances of making a direct qualification for the 2023 50-over World Cup in India.

“It is disappointing that Cricket South Africa will be unable to contest the ODI series in January, Nick Hockley,” Cricket Australia’s CEO, said in a statement. “That said, we are delighted to be hosting South Africa for the three-Test series which includes the Boxing Day and New Year’s Tests, and with the comprehensive schedule of international cricket that will take place across Australia throughout the summer.”

“This will include the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup and a record six touring teams for the Men’s and Women’s international series as well as the twelfth season of the BBL and the eighth season of the WBBL. We can’t wait to see fans back at the cricket this summer.”

In response to Cricket Australia’s statement, CSA Chief Executive Officer, Pholetsi Moseki said, “CSA is always keen on honoring its bilateral commitments. While CSA is committed to honoring its fixtures in respect of the Future Tours Programme there will sometimes be unforeseen circumstances that would negate this resolve.

“In the case of the Australia tour, CSA reached out to its counterpart months ago to reschedule the tour to mutually aggregable dates. CSA offered four options to that effect. Unfortunately, and to our disappointment, none of these were acceptable to Cricket Australia.

“CSA has agreed that ICC award Australia the competition points. While we are saddened at losing the crucial points, we are confident that our in-form Proteas team will garner the requisite points through the remaining games to secure automatic qualification to the showpiece event in India next year.

“As difficult as this decision has been for CSA, the long-term sustainability of our new T20 League is reliant on having all our domestic players available for this exciting new addition to the CSA calendar.

“CSA is looking forward to be hosted by Cricket Australia for an enticing blend of cricket in the three-Test series which includes the Boxing Day and New Year’s Tests in Melbourne and Sydney,” concluded Moseki.

Given South Africa’s withdrawal, Cricket Australia has shifted the venues of their home games against West Indies, England, and Pakistan.

The relocated matches are:

October 7: Dettol Men’s T20I v West Indies, The Gabba, Brisbane | previously Metricon Stadium

October 9:Dettol Men’s T20I v England, Perth Stadium | previously The Gabba

January 26: CommBank Women’s T20I v Pakistan, Blundstone Arena | previously Manuka Oval, January 27

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