South Africa to stage Champions Trophy

NEW DELHI, (Reuters) – South Africa will stage this year’s Champions Trophy one-day tournament in September and October, the International Cricket Council (ICC) said yesterday.

The ICC executive board made a “unanimous” decision in a teleconference after its executive committee made the recommendation last week.

The eight-team event was originally scheduled to take place in Pakistan but was postponed last year and then moved out due to security concerns.

The Wanderers stadium in Johannesburg and Centurion in Pretoria were identified as preferred venues subject to conclusion of satisfactory commercial terms, an ICC release said.

South Africa was shortlisted as the host country for the premier one-day tournament, second only in importance to the World Cup, after fears of poor weather ruled out Sri Lankan capital Colombo for the Sept. 24-Oct. 5 event.

The trimmed event this time will be played over 12 days.

“I think the board has made a sensible decision that will give the event every chance of success,” ICC president David Morgan said.

“We now have clarity on the subject and we can make firm plans for what is going to be a great spectacle of ODI cricket.

“I would like to thank Sri Lanka Cricket for its commitment to offer an alternative to Pakistan. And also, I want to acknowledge its willingness to step aside in this matter.
“I’d also like to thank CSA (Cricket South Africa) for putting its hand up and offering to host this event.”

South Africa jointly hosted the 2003 one-day World Cup with Zimbabwe and Kenya and the World Twenty20 in 2007.

The ICC board confirmed the dates for next year’s World Twenty20 in the West Indies from Apr. 30 to May. 16. Matches will be staged in St Lucia, Barbados and St Kitts, which will simultaneously stage the women’s tournament.

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