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'Music to our ears' — CSA welcomes fans back as 4,500 expected at Centurion ODI

Tiisetso Malepa Sports reporter
SA fans at SuperSport Park in Centurion. There will be 4,500 cheering fans at the stadium when SA take on Bangladesh in the third and final ODI with the three-match series tied at 1-1. File image
SA fans at SuperSport Park in Centurion. There will be 4,500 cheering fans at the stadium when SA take on Bangladesh in the third and final ODI with the three-match series tied at 1-1. File image
Image: Cricket SA/Twitter

Cricket SA (CSA) has welcomed President Cyril Ramaphosa's announcement that fans will be allowed into sports stadiums at 50% capacity.

CEO Pholetsi Moseki reminded fans to adhere to Covid-19 safety protocols after SuperSport Park put an additional 3,000 tickets on sale for the third and final ODI against Bangladesh, starting at 2pm.

Added to the 1,500 tickets already sold, CSA expected a crowd of 4,500, the largest attendance at a professional sports event since the onset of the pandemic two years ago.  

“CSA is thrilled to receive this news which comes at a time when our domestic cricket is in full swing and while Bangladesh is on an ODI and Test series tour,” Moseki said.

“Our fans have been waiting for this moment for a long time.

“As we go out to stadiums, let us do so recognising that Covid-19 is still with us.”

Ramaphosa announced on Tuesday that outdoor and indoor venues may admit fans to 50% capacity on proof of vaccination or a negative Covid-19 test not older than 72 hours.

Previous regulation limited spectators at stadiums to 2,000 and was in effect from October last year.

CSA chair Lawson Naidoo said the organisation was grateful to sports minister Nathi Mthethwa for advancing the sports community’s call for capacity at stadiums to be increased.

“The onus is now on all of us to be responsible so we can achieve a Covid-19-free country and return to 100% spectator attendance at stadiums.”

CSA said children under 12 would be exempt from vaccination requirements to enter stadiums.

Northerns Cricket Union (NCU), the host venue for the ODI series-decider against Bangladesh, was scrambling on Wednesday to market the extra seats available for the match.

“It is short notice but we welcome it and we will try to see if we can get a few fans in there,” said Jacques Faul, CEO at NCU and the Titans.

The Proteas will be thrilled to play in front of supporters in Centurion as they aim to win the final ODI against Bangladesh to clinch the series 2-1.

The tourists stunned their hosts in the opening match in Centurion before SA stormed back in the second "Pink ODI" at the Wanderers in Johannesburg.

TimesLIVE


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