South Africa are planning to host rescheduled tours by Australia and England in 2023, the Cricket South Africa (CSA) director of cricket, Graeme Smith confirmed on Friday.
The Australia Test series, which was called off in February last year over concerns around Covid-19, is set to be played in August 2023 while England are scheduled to tour in the winter of 2022-23 to fulfill a three-match ODI series that was postponed for similar reasons in December 2020, as per ESPNcricinfo report. Notably, Nick Hockley, the chief executive of Cricket Australia, had also previously indicated that a window for 2023 had been agreed on by the two boards.
"England, I think, is around Feb-March next year and then Australia is in August 2023 to replace the [Test series postponed in 2021]. That will be announced sometime soon," Smith said when interviewed by the host broadcaster, SuperSport, during the Cape Town Test against India.
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Not playing during the pandemic has hit CSA's bottom line -- the Australia cancellation resulted in losses to the tune of Rand 30 million (US$ 2 million) to Rand 40 million (US$ 2.6 million), while England's withdrawal halfway through a limited-overs tour meant a US$ 1.5 million hit on TV rights.
The former South African captain admitted that with so much white-ball cricket being played nowadays, it's very challenging to reschedule a series lost due to Covid-19. "With the series lost in Covid and the challenge is you have eight white-ball events in eight years now, you have got IPL extending -- trying to fit your calendar cycle in is a great challenge for everybody. So you need to review, you need to stay with the times. And you need to make sure we keep putting South African cricket on the map," Smith said.
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"Our team -- both men and women -- needs to be performing well and be recognised and people want to play us. But we need to make sure when things are happening in world cricket South Africa is at the forefront," he added.