Covid-19: India women set to pull out of England tour
ECB likely to extend tour by South Africa women to give the England as many fixtures as possible
The India women's team is all set to pull out of their September tour of England because of the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic.
The original plan was to start the tour by the end of June, but it was pushed back to September because of the pandemic, and the ECB subsequently planned to turn it into a tri-series with South Africa as the third team. But those plans have been put on ice with the number of cases on the rise in India.
ESPNcricinfo understands that England's bilateral series against South Africa - originally scheduled to comprise two T20Is and four ODIs - will now be extended in order to give the team as many fixtures as possible this summer. A revised schedule is expected within the next few weeks.
The ECB has repeatedly reiterated its commitment to the women's game, and last month awarded new retainer contracts to 20 domestic players, who were allocated teams in the new regional centres.
Plans for domestic women's cricket for this season remain under discussion, with Surrey set to play Middlesex in a T20 at The Oval on Tuesday for the London Cup in the first top-level women's game in the country this summer.
Twenty-four England women's players have been training since late June at six different venues: Loughborough, Headingley, The Oval, Bristol, Hove and Chester Boughton Hall. Venues for the South Africa series are yet to be confirmed, though it is understood Derby is likely to be among them.
Matt Roller is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo. He tweets at @mroller98