Wet outfield ruins Eden Gardens T20I
India v South Africa - Match abandoned
A waterlogged outfield forced the third T20 between South Africa and India to be abandoned without a toss or a ball bowled at Eden Gardens. The no-result gives South Africa a 2-0 series win and deprived India of a shot at redemption.
India captain MS Dhoni revealed at the presentation ceremony that they had planned on three changes to their starting XI: Ajinkya Rahane to open the batting, Amit Mishra to reinforce the spin department and Stuart Binny as the allrounder even as they targeted a consolation victory. Instead, they have slipped two places to sixth on the ICC T20 rankings, which is where South Africa sat before this series. The visitors have now moved up to fifth.
South Africa did not reveal if they were going to give an opportunity to Eddie Leie or Khaya Zondo, but captain Faf du Plessis admitted to being disappointed at not being able to complete a whitewash. The showers that fell on Thursday had ceased at least an hour before play was due to begin and three supersoppers were in operation from then on, but the outfield remained soggy.
Three inspections were conducted at hourly intervals, the first being 30 minutes after the scheduled start of play at 7pm and the last at 9:30pm, two-and-a-half hours after the game was due to begin. The latest the match could have begun was 45 minutes after that, at 10:15pm, when there would have only been time for between five and seven overs a side.
Eden Gardens is due to host the World T20 final and there will be concerns over the drainage although India's captain MS Dhoni said he did not expect the outfield to dry without any sun and given the amount of rain that fell and the exposed areas of the field.
Firdose Moonda is ESPNcricinfo's South Africa correspondent