England were supposed to play a 3 day match against South Africa A on Friday at the Willowmoore Park, however the match’s status has been downgraded following the illness of three English bowlers. Jack Leach, Start Broad, and Jofra Archer are all hit by illness.
On Thursday, the South African Cricket body, Cricket South Africa (CSA) said it has agreed to the request made by England to change the status of the match from First Class to a Non First Class friendly match, which means that England will be able to bring in out the players during the game, even if they were not fit to start the game.
Danny Reuben, Head of Team Communications, England Cricket Team, said that Leach, Broad, and Jofra started feeling flu like symptoms about 2 days ago, and since then their health deteriorated. The three players could not play the 2 day match on Wednesday against Cricket South Africa Invitation XI at Willowmoore Park. The players could not make it to the venue either, they had to stay at their hotel.
Reuben said “Two to three other members of the team and two members of the backroom staff felt unwell today with similar symptoms” adding “We hope that within 48 to 72 hours we will see improvements in their health”.
Reuben was grateful of the flexibility of CSA. However he also said if the circumstances were not have been like this “we would have wanted to play the match first-class”.
Friday’s game was the only First Class match England were scheduled to play before the start of their 4 match Word Test Championship series against the host, South Africa. The first test match will be played on the 26th of December at the Centurion.