South Africa Women have declined the ECB's invitation for a tour of the UK in September 2020. CSA made the decision due to the travel restrictions currently in place for South African national teams in the backdrop of the Covid-19 pandemic.

"It is frustrating that another opportunity for our Momentum Proteas to play against top quality opposition has again had to be cancelled but as always the safety of our players and support staff is the prime consideration, " CSA director of cricket, Graeme Smith, said.

England had been hoping to host five women's ODIs and two T20Is in September, after plans for a tri-series also featuring India fell through. England's women returned to training last month and have been playing intra-squad matches in a bio-secure bubble in Derby.

The news is a blow to the ECB's hopes of staging women's international cricket this summer. Managing director of women's cricket, Clare Connor, said she was "immensely disappointed" with the news but has not given up hope of staging some fixtures, with West Indies Women reportedly potential tourists.

''We have been committed from the outset to deliver the same bio-secure standards for both men's and women's international cricket, an investment that included exclusive hotel use for teams, chartered flights and medical provisions," Connor said. "An ECB team, with support from the Incora County Ground, Derby, has created a dedicated behind closed doors environment to host all of our women's internationals.

"Women's and girls' cricket is a huge part of the ECB strategy and despite the devastating impact of COVID-19, this ambition has not waned. We continue to explore all options to see England Women play competitively this summer.''

South Africa's borders are currently closed for international travel, although repatriation flights are allowed to land and business travel is permitted if government approved.

A 24-woman squad had been preparing for the tour, and was expected to convene at South Africa's high performance centre in Pretoria on Sunday. However, they will now continue with one-to-one training programmes with their provinces.

Speaking before the news of the cancellation, Smith said: "We've been engaging with the ECB for a period of time now for this women's tour. It's something we would love to get done. I must commend the ECB on the money they are investing in trying to get our ladies over there, looking to charter planes and then putting them into bio-bubbles. That's are great sign for the women's game. We want to get our women to the forefront. We are working with government to open up and see if we can get some travel going even on a private charter.

"There's a lot of new challenges that we are considering and trying to use science and debating with people going forward. Sharing is also such a key thing now and it's been great to work with member bodies around the world - England are playing international series now - and sharing their thoughts and experiences is going to be key."