India tour of South Africa likely to begin on January 5

Manchester: India are most likely to begin their tour to South Africa with the New Year’s Test on January 5 or 6 next year in Cape Town.

According to ESPNcricinfo, the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) and Cricket South Africa (CSA) are on the brink of finalising the details for the tour, comprising four Tests, three ODIs and three T20Is.

It should be revised that the two cricket boards have been engaging in discussions since the beginning of this year, however, they have failed to finalised the schedule yet.

Last month, the BCCI had informed CSA that the Virat Kohli-led side would not tour the country until the last week of this year as their home series against Sri Lanka would only end on December 24.

With the New Year’s Test traditionally being played at Newlands from January 2, the CSA is reportedly trying to convince the BCCI to play the first Test from January 4 in a bid to maximise gate money.

According to an official quoted by ESPNcricinfo, India are expected to arrive in South Africa in the last few days of December and would surely play one practice match ahead of the opening Test.

“Now they (CSA) are trying to fit in everything within a short window,” the official said.

Negotiations have been complicated by the fact that Australia will be playing a four-match Test series in South Africa, starting on March 1, which makes the time frame for the India tour a tight one. (ANI)