Australia prune Test series against South Africa for Twenty20

Melbourne, May 5 (IANS) The lop-sided priorities of Twenty20 have forced Cricket Australia (CA) to prune one of their greatest modern rivalries with South Africa.

For the first time, South Africa will play only two Tests in a short series later this year, due to the glorified Champions League Twenty20 tournament in India during September-October.

India own 50 per cent of the Champions League, Australia 33 per cent and South Africa 17 per cent.

The Daily Telegraph reported that due to their financial commitments to the Champions League Twenty20, both Cricket Australia (CA) and Cricket South Africa (CSA) decided to have just two Tests for the first time. The series will also see two Twenty20 matches and three one-day internationals.

The daily said that CA maintained that this tour is extra cricket slotted in among the standard four-year home and away cycles of three-Test series.

CA refused to comment on the tour-details until they were released by CSA but CA chief executive James Sutherland claimed that Test cricket remained Australia’s priority.

‘It is our premium format of the game and we’re committed to it,’ Sutherland was quoted as saying by the daily.