Kingsmead, which lost the traditional Boxing Day Test this year, will host the first Test of the Australia tour, starting on March 1, 2018.
This is the first time since 1969-1970 that Australia will participate in a four-Test series and the first time the two sides will have competed in a series consisting of more than three matches since the Proteas’ readmission to international cricket.
There is another Test for St George’s Park (which was given the Sri Lanka Boxing Day Test), followed by Tests at Newlands and the Wanderers, leaving Centurion out in the cold.
The Proteas have never won a Test series against Australia, and CSA Chief Executive Haroon Lorgat has spurred them on to end the drought against the Aussies on home soil.
‘Since unification in 1991, this will be the first time the two countries will compete in a four-match Test series,’ he said.
‘This will add to the significance of the Test series and will offer us a perfect opportunity to finally win a Test series at home against the Aussies. Test match cricket between Australia and South Africa has always produced epic battles and brought out high-class individual performances that have become part of the annals of the game.
‘With this series being played straight after the tour by India, we can expect one of the most challenging seasons of Test match cricket we have ever witnessed in South Africa,’ concluded Mr. Lorgat.
Australia, who suffered a 2-1 series defeat at the hands of South Africa on home soil in November, are currently the No 2 ranked side on the ICC Test rankings. South Africa are fourth, but could rise to third after the Sri Lanka series.
Australia Tour of South Africa 2017-18
Feb 22-24: Tour match v SA Invitational XI, Sahara Park, Benoni
Mar 1-5: 1st Test, Kingsmead, Durban
Mar 9-13: 2nd Test, St George’s Park, Port Elizabeth
Mar 22-26: 3rd Test, Newlands, Cape Town
Mar 30 – Apr 3: 4th Test, Wanderers, Johannesburg
PHOTO: Muzi Ntombela/BackpagePix