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SA and Australia to clash in rare four-Test series

January 04, 2017 17:02 IST

IMAGE: Australia captain Steve Smith, left, collides with South Africa fast bowler Vernon Philander. Photograph: David Gray/Reuters.

South Africa and Australia will contest a four-Test series for the first time in almost 50 years when they clash in March and April 2018, Cricket South Africa (CSA) announced on Wednesday.

Australia will tour South Africa seeking revenge for their 2-1 home series loss in November and will play four Tests for the first time since being humbled 4-0 on South Africa soil in the 1969/70 season.

Since South Africa’s readmission to international cricket in 1991 the sides have met in only two- or three-Test series.

The first Test will be played in Durban (March 1-5), followed by Port Elizabeth (March 9-13), Cape Town (March 22-26) and Johannesburg (March 30-April 3).

“Test match cricket between Australia and South Africa has always produced epic battles and brought out high-class individual performances that have become part of the annals of the game,” CSA Chief Executive, Haroon Lorgat said in a statement.

“Australia are currently the number two ranked team on the ICC Test table and we will need to beat them and India to regain our place at the top of the table.”

The tour will form part of a busy home summer for South Africa who will also host Bangladesh (two Tests, three ODIs, two Twenty20s) in September and October, as well as India (four Tests, five ODIs, three Twenty20s) over the festive season period and into 2018.

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