New Delhi | Jagran Sports Desk: The opening One Day International (ODI) fixture between India and South Africa at Himachal Pradesh Cricket Stadium in Dharamsala was abandoned without a ball being bowled due to rains on Thursday.

It was the second instance that incessant rains washed away a cricket match at the picturesque HPCA stadium within six months. Incidentally, the previous fixture was also a clash between Proteas and Men in Blue in September last year. 

The ODI opener of the three-match ODI series was earlier in doubt as the weather forecast had predicted rains and thundershowers over the region on Thursday and Friday due to a fresh western disturbance over Pakistan and adjoining areas of Jammu and Kashmir. 

Organisers, as well as fans, had offered prayers at the Indrunag Temple to appease the rain gods.

Also Read: Coronavirus| IPL 2020 to be played in empty stadiums? Govt orders international cricket matches behind closed doors

On Wednesday, heavy rains lashed the hilly region after the two teams practice session forcing organisers to cover the ground. But, it rained the entire night on the eve of the match.

It was overcast for major part of the day and heavens opened up just before the start of play and continued to rain, forcing the toss to be delayed. 

Though the rain was not heavy, it was enough for the ground staff to accumulate. Despite working tirelessly, they failed to clear the ground forcing on-field umpires to call off the match. 

But despite working tirelessly, the ground staff failed to clear the ground, forcing the on-field umpires to call off the match.
The cut-off time for a 20-over game was 6.30 pm but after final inspection, the umpires decided to abandon the match much before that.

The Coronavirus outbreak (COVID-19) and adverse weather conditions had also affected ticket sales for the opening fixture.

The two teams will next face each other in the second ODI scheduled to be played in Lucknow on March 15. The final match with be played at the iconic Eden Garden stadium in Kolkata on March 18.


(with PTI inputs)

Posted By: James Kuanal