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Incessant rain threatens to wash out crucial 3rd ODI

With the series levelled 1-1, both Dravid and South African coach hoped the crucial Chennai game would not be washed out.

india Updated: Nov 21, 2005 18:27 IST

Bad weather threatens to wash out the third one-day international between India and South Africa on Tuesday.

Incessant rain soaked the Chidambaram stadium on Monday and prevented the teams from training ahead of the crucial day-night game with the five-match series locked 1-1.

More rain was forecast for Tuesday in the southern metropolis which had been flooded by the southwest monsoon over the last month.

"We can start on time on Tuesday afternoon provided there is no more rain, but I am not very hopeful," said N. Srinivasan, president of the host Tamil Nadu Cricket Association.

"It has not been easy to prepare the wicket because the weather cleared a bit only last week. Now it seems the rain is back again."

South African coach Mickey Arthur hoped the match would not be affected.

"It will really be sad if the game is rained off," Arthur said. "This can be the most important match of the series."

South Africa won the first match in Hyderabad by five wickets, before India drew level with a six-wicket win in Bangalore on Saturday that ended South Africa's 20-match unbeaten streak.

Indian captain Rahul Dravid was slightly more optimistic. "I was lucky to get a glimpse of the wicket under the covers and it looks good for a great game of cricket," he said.

"I hope we get the full 50 overs for each side, otherwise we will be busy with paper and calculators trying to work out the run-rate.

"It has already been a very tight series and a wash-out will make the last two games very crucial."

The fourth one-dayer will be played at the Eden Gardens in Kolkata on Friday and the fifth at the Wankhede stadium in Mumbai next Monday.

If Tuesday's match is not rained off, Sachin Tendulkar of India will become the most capped player in one-day history by surpassing Pakistani Wasim Akram's world record of 356 appearances.

First Published: Nov 21, 2005 13:53 IST