Monday 14 January 2008 

Ontong And Morkel Return To Proteas One-Day Squad

IN-FORM bizhub Highveld Lions batsman Justin Ontong has been recalled to the Proteas limited overs squad for the Standard Bank International Pro20 at the Liberty Life Wanderers Stadium on Friday as well as the first of five MTN ODIs against the West Indies at SuperSport Park, Centurion, on Sunday.

Ontong played the last of his 21 ODIs against India at Bangalore in November, 2005. This season he has scored more than 600 runs in first-class cricket.

The selectors have named a squad of 15 for these two matches after which it will be revised for the remaining four MTN ODI matches.

Explaining the size of the squad, selection chief Joubert Strydom said that there had been a couple of factors that needed to be taken into account. “There is an injury concern over Charl Langeveldt who missed the SuperSport Series match between the Nashua Cape Cobras and the bizhub Highveld Lions at the weekend because of a foot injury. He will be subjected to a fitness test as soon as the Proteas squad assembles on Wednesday.

“In addition, Herschelle Gibbs is not available for Sunday’s MTN ODI for personal reasons. Justin Ontong will take his place for this game and AB de Villiers will stand in as opening batsman.

“Justin has been in good form this season and deserves to be rewarded with a call-up. He has made a lot of runs including his century for South Africa A against the West Indies. He also is the complete package for limited overs cricket, being an outstanding fielder and a more than capable bowler.

“We are also satisfied that Herschelle’s career is on the up again. We want him to play as much cricket as possible and he will definitely start the Standard Bank International Pro20.”

The squad also features the return from injury of all-rounder Morne Morkel who successfully convinced the selectors of his fitness during the SuperSport Series match between the Nashua Titans and the Nashua Dolphins.

Proteas squad: Graeme Smith (captain), Herschelle Gibbs, Jacques Kallis, AB de Villiers, JP Duminy, Justin Ontong, Mark Boucher, Shaun Pollock, Albie Morkel, Johan Botha, Andre Nel, Makhaya Ntini, Dale Steyn, Morne Morkel, Charl Langeveldt.

© Cricket South Africa


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