South Africa v England ODI series to go ahead after full set of negative coronavirus results

Series had been in jeopardy after an unnamed Proteas player tested positive from within the bio-secure bubble

The One-Day International series between South Africa and England will start in Paarl on Sunday after a full set of negative results was returned by the host's squad in their latest round of coronavirus testing, officials have confirmed.

The series was initially scheduled to begin on Friday, but the first match at Newlands was postponed an hour before its start after a South Africa player tested positive in the team's bio-secure hotel environment.

There had been suggestions that the entire series would be called off if more positive tests were reported from the latest round of mandatory testing.

England expressed concern over the strength of the bio-secure environment after the positive result, while a South Africa team investigation has not yet shown how the unnamed player caught the virus.

"The entire Proteas team has returned negative results from the Covid-19 tests that were conducted yesterday evening in Cape Town ahead of the three-match One-Day International (ODI) series," Cricket South Africa (CSA) confirmed in a statement on Saturday.

The latest positive test was the third for South Africa either before or during the six-match white-ball tour by England that is supplying much-needed revenue for the embattled CSA.

Team doctor Shuaib Manjra admitted they were at a loss to explain how the player contracted the virus in the bio-secure hotel that is shared by South Africa and England.

"We have spoken to the player, looked at security cameras and other information, and we have not been able to date to identify where that source was. But clearly it is cause for concern,” Manjra said in a statement on Friday.

He denied any player had left the team hotel without authorisation.

"I can categorically state that no player is able to leave the hotel environment. The security will not allow the player to leave, unless he is doing so in an assigned, official vehicle."

After Sunday’s opening match in Paarl, there will be further games at Newlands in Cape Town on Monday and Wednesday. The ODI series comes after the tourists swept the Twenty20 series 3-0 which means England now top the ICC rankings for both limited-overs formats.