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Marquee series cut short by CL Twenty20

One of the marquee events in international cricket, the Test series between Australia and South Africa later this year has shrunk to an unprecedented two-match affair to accommodate the lucrative Champions League Twenty20 in India.

cricket Updated: May 06, 2011 00:53 IST

One of the marquee events in international cricket, the Test series between Australia and South Africa later this year has shrunk to an unprecedented two-match affair to accommodate the lucrative Champions League Twenty20 in India.

The official itinerary of Australia's October-November tour of South Africa is yet to be announced but according to Daily Telegraph, for the first time there will be room for only two Tests.

"The billion-dollar cash cow, Twenty20, continues to strangle Test cricket and with it one of Australia's greatest modern rivalries. In a sad indictment of the modern game and its lopsided priorities, Australia and South Africa will play only two Tests in a short series," the report said.

"Chief among the reasons for relegating this usually fierce competition to minor league status is the glorified domestic Champions League Twenty20 tournament in India during September and early October," it said.

Cricket Australia, however, said that this tour was extra cricket slotted in among the standard four-year home and away cycles of 3-Test series. CA chief executive James Sutherland claimed that Test cricket remained Australia's priority.