Organised cricket in South Africa will return on July 18 with a three-team event featuring 24 leading players, Cricket South Africa announced on Wednesday.

The match was originally scheduled for June 27 but was postponed because government approval of health precautions was not obtained in time.

The new date marks the birthday of the late president Nelson Mandela. It will be the first televised live sporting event in South Africa since the start of the Covid-19 pandemic.

The match, promoted as 3T Cricket, will be played without spectators at SuperSport Park in Centurion. Although three teams of eight players will be involved, it will be a single match, with each team facing 12 overs, six each from the other two sides. The teams will be captained by Quinton de Kock, AB de Villiers and Kagiso Rabada.

The players will assemble three days earlier in what CSA’s medical officer, Dr Shuaib Manjra, described as a “sanitised eco-system”, with all players being tested for COVID-19 before and after the event.

Wednesday’s announcement came five days after government approval was given for cricketers to resume training in groups. CSA announced the names of 44 players who will train at yet-to-be-announced venues nearest their homes because travel restrictions remain in place in South Africa.