Shashank Kishore is a senior sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo
The Quadrangular series between the A teams of India, Australia and South Africa has been shifted out of Vijayawada due to incessant rains. The change was confirmed by an Andhra Cricket Association official soon after four games were washed out without a ball bowled. ESPNcricinfo understands Bengaluru will now host the rescheduled tournament with the league fixtures slated for August 23, 25 and 27. The final will be played on August 29.
Matches to be televised will likely be held at M Chinnaswamy Stadium, while the others are expected to take place at KSCA's Alur facility on the outskirts of the city. Alur hosted the recently concluded second four-day Test between India A and South Africa A earlier this month.
The ACA ground in Mulapadu, which was to host the fixtures, does not have a state-of-the-art drainage facility. Vijayawada has received intermittent rain over the past week. This forced the first set of matches to be abandoned on Friday despite there not being any rain for more than 24 hours in the build-up to the start.
The ACA was confident of preparing the surface and outfield for Sunday, provided there was no rain, but there was a thunderstorm on Saturday evening. This resulted in water seepage that caused significant damage to the pitch and outfield. Sunday dawned with continuous drizzle, and although both teams made it out to the ground, they had to return to their hotel not long after making the hour-long trip.
That the one indoor facility in Mangalagiri is an hour's drive from Vijayawada has added to the players' frustration, leaving them with little or no opportunities for match practice in the five days they've been in the city. They have been forced to remain indoors or undertake fitness sessions at a private gym.