South Africa to tour Pakistan after 14 years

South Africa will tour Pakistan for the first time since 2007 for two Tests and three T20Is in January, 2021.

Cricket South Africa

South Africa will arrive in Karachi on January 16 and will play the first Test at the National Stadium in Karachi from January 26-30.   -  PTI

South Africa will tour Pakistan for the first time since 2007 for two Tests and three T20Is in January, 2021. The Pakistan Cricket Board confirmed that the tour will comprise two ICC World Test Championship fixtures.

South Africa will arrive in Karachi on January 16 and will play the first Test at the National Stadium in Karachi from January 26-30. The second Test will be in Rawalpindi from February 4-8. The iconic Gaddafi Stadium will be the venue of the three T20Is, which are scheduled for February 11, 13, 14.

Upon arrival in Karachi and in the lead up to the first Test, South Africa will be under isolation, following which it will hold training sessions and play intra-squad practice matches.

This will be South Africa’s first visit to Pakistan since the 2007 tour when it won the Karachi Test by 160 runs to clinch the series 1-0. The subsequent series in 2010 and 2013 were played in the United Arab Emirates.

READ: Pakistan team released from managed isolation in New Zealand

Since 1995, the two sides have played 11 Test series with South Africa winning seven and Pakistan one in 2003. In this background, Babar Azam’s side will be determined to end the 18-year series win drought and move up in the ICC World Test Championship ladder.

CSA Director of Cricket, Graeme Smith said: “It’s pleasing to see so many countries making a return to Pakistan – a proud, cricket-loving nation. Cricket South Africa is delighted to be counted among them.

“As someone who has toured the country on more than one occasion back in my playing days, I know how much passion the people of Pakistan have for the game as well as the love and support that the Proteas enjoy there as a team.

Pakistan captain Babar Azam said: “I am delighted that South Africa have confirmed their tour to Pakistan and look forward to captaining my country for the first time in a home Test at a venue where we recently won our maiden HBL Pakistan Super League title.

“Looking at the calendar of international cricket in 2021, I am pleased we are playing more against the sides which are ranked above us. This is critical to not only our learning and development, but also an opportunity to improve our rankings across all formats.

“With the amount of cricket that is lined up in 2021, I am excited that a number of promising and budding cricketers will get chances to break into the national side and cement their places. This is critical to Pakistan’s future in developing a strong and formidable nucleus of players who can step up and challenge any opposition anywhere in the world.”

Tour itinerary

January 26-30: 1st Test, Karachi

February 4-8: 2nd Test, Rawalpindi

February 11 – 1st T20I, Lahore

February 13 – 2nd T20I, Lahore

February 14 – 3rd T20I, Lahore