Rain delays start of Windies era of 'Hope'
West Indies batsman Shai Hope plays a shot during the second one day international (ODI) cricket match between India and West Indies at the Dr. Y.S. Rajasekhara Reddy ACA-VDCA Cricket Stadium in Visakhapatnam on October 24, 2018. (Photo: AFP)

EAST LONDON, South Africa (CMC) — West Indies will have to wait a bit longer to start a "new era" of leadership under Shai Hope when persistent rain forced the first One-day International against hosts South Africa to be abandoned without a ball being bowled on Thursday.

The day-night match was called off at 4:30 pm local time (10:30 am East Caribbean Time), about 3-1/2 hours after the scheduled start, without a toss being spun, and no hope of play at Buffalo Park.

Rain and clouds dominated all day long at the ground, which was staging its first ODI in six years, and though there were a few brief spells when the rain stopped, they never lasted long enough for the ground staff to carry out substantial mopping up operations.

The teams will return to the venue for the second ODI on Saturday, when the forecast appears far more promising. The third and final ODI of the series will be next Tuesday in Potchefstroom.

The series is valuable to both sides as they look ahead to the ICC Men's Cricket World Cup 2023 India later this year.

Neither has yet qualified and face the prospect of going through a qualification tournament in June and July in Zimbabwe.

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