Dane van Niekerk and Stafanie Taylor at the toss. © Getty Images

Cricket West Indies (CWI) and Cricket South Africa (CSA) have agreed to postpone the five match ODI series scheduled for the end of this month in Jamaica and Trinidad. The bilateral series was meant to serve as preparation ahead of the ICC Women’s World Cup Qualifier in Sri Lanka this July.

However, with the ICC having indefinitely postponed the qualifying tournament due to the COVID-19 pandemic, both CWI and CSA deemed it necessary to call off the bilateral series as well. With the uncertainty surrounding international travel, quarantine requirements and taking into consideration the health and safety of the players in the current situation, both boards agreed the best decision was taken.

The men’s ‘A’ tour between both sides has also been postponed.

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“The health and safety of the players and coaching staff is of paramount importance to both CWI and CSA and with the current COVID-19 travel restrictions it is impossible for us to consider both tours taking place as we had originally planned,” said CWI CEO Johnny Grave said. “We are continuing our discussions with CSA on the feasibility of hosting the Men’s tour later this summer and will have further discussions in due course on new dates for the Women’s and ‘A’ Team tours.”

Having finished third in the ICC Women’s Championship table, South Africa have already booked their place in the Women’s World Cup in New Zealand next year. West Indies, on the other hand, had a dismal time in the championship, finishing in seventh place – only managing to win their series against Sri Lanka who were eighth.

“It is a frustrating state of affairs in which cricket finds itself around the world but there are more important issues that have to be confronted and the wellbeing of our players and support staff must always come first,” said CSA’s acting CEO, Dr. Jacques Faul. “Both our men’s and women’s national teams are keen to get back on the playing field as soon as possible. They want to build on their recent good results with the men achieving a 3-0 victory over Australia in their recent Momentum ODI series against Australia and our Momentum Proteas women coming so close to reaching the ICC Women’s T20 World Cup final.”