England and South Africa to resume third Test on Saturday, announces ECB

·2-min read
 (Getty Images for Surrey CCC)
(Getty Images for Surrey CCC)

England and South Africa will play out the deciding Test of their three-match series this weekend after play was suspended on Friday following the death of Queen Elizabeth II.

Friday’s play at the Oval was postponed following the announcement of the Queen’s death on Thursday evening. After the opening day’s play was washed out, Saturday’s play will be considered to be Day 3 of the series decider.

The decision comes following guidance from the Government that there was “no obligation” to postpone or cancel sporting fixtures during the period of national mourning.

The Government’s guidance allowed individual sporting bodies to decide whether to continue and although football across the country has been called off, cricket is set to be in line with rugby and golf in playing on this weekend.

England’s captain, Ben Stokes, said he would be “honoured” to play in the Queen’s memory, with all professional and recreational cricket also cleared to resume this weekend. The ECB said a minute’s silence would be observed followed by the national anthems while black armbands will also be worn by players and coaches.

“Cricket will resume on Saturday to pay tribute to Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II and honour her remarkable life and service,” the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) said.

“Play will resume from Saturday including international, domestic, and recreational fixtures. The decision has been taken after consultation with DCMS and in line with Official National Mourning guidance.

“This means the Men's Test match between England and South Africa will begin at The Oval and the Women's IT20 match between England and India will also go ahead at the Riverside in Durham. The scheduled match between England and Sri Lanka Men's U19 along with recreational cricket fixtures will also take place as planned.

“Before each match, a minute's silence will be observed followed by the national anthem. All players and coaches will wear black armbands. Branded inventory will be replaced with messaging paying cricket's respects to The Queen.”