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Sport 'This really confused us' - South Africa seeking compensation after Australian cancellation of Test tour

05:46  20 february  2021
05:46  20 february  2021 Source:   sportingnews.com

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South Africa's cricket authority have confirmed they are seeking compensation for Australia's cancellation of the Test tour that was set to take place in the nation during February and March.

Cricket South Africa has lodged an official dispute notice with the International Cricket Council over Australia's decision on February 2 to withdraw from the series, after Cricket Australia citing an 'unacceptable risk' because of the Covid-19 pandemic.

Via a letter confirming their withdrawal, CA accused their South African counterparts of failing to meet deadlines of evidence and assurance over the country's ability to protect Australian players and staff from the pandemic while on tour.

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However, CSA interim chairman Stavros Nicolaou suggested Australia's reasoning behind cancelling the tour wasn't steadfast and he didn't agree with CA's classification of the South African variant of the COVID-19 virus.

"[Australia's position] really confused us because the day we received the letter South Africa was on a very significant downward trajectory of the pandemic," Nicolaou said.

"We also don’t agree that there is a more virulent strain. We know there is a more contagious strain but it is not more virulent."

While unsure of what compensation South African cricket could receive, Nicolaou made it clear he would be fighting for recompense for lost income following the tour's cancellation.

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It is also understood the South Africans are keen to be compensated for points they could have gained in the matches against Australia for the World Test Championship.

"We don’t know what the prospects of success are because there are provisions in the rules that relate to COVID for postponements to take place," he said.

"But that’s not the main issue. One needs to assess what these cancellations and postponements mean to the smaller nations or the poorer nations with less resources. I think there is a recalibration that needs to take place in cricket."

Australia was due to play three Test matches in South Africa as part of the inaugural 2019-21 World Test Championship.

The green and gold's T20 tour of New Zealand will still go ahead with the first 20-over match against the Kiwis to be played on Monday.

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