South Africa Keep Faith With Perth Test Heroes
South Africa have kept faith in the team that beat Australia in Perth earlier this month in naming a 13-man squad to take on New Zealand in two Tests in January.
The 11 players that won by 309 runs to take a 1-0 series win at the WACA are joined by Jacques Rudolph and Rory Kleinveldt as leg-spinner Imran Tahir is left out.
After Robin Peterson staked his claim by taking six wickets in Perth, he has been given a further opportunity to take on the role as South Africa's premier spinner.
The first Test begins on 2nd January in Cape Town and the second game in Port Elizabeth gets underway on 11th January.
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"I don’t think anybody will be surprised that we have kept faith with the 11 players who did duty in the winning Test match against Australia at Perth as well as Rory Kleinveldt and Jacques Rudolph, who played two Test matches each," Cricket South Africa (CSA) selection convener Andrew Hudson said.
"There is every indication at this stage that Jacques Kallis will be fully fit to fill his all-rounder’s role which will get us back to the balance that has served us so well this year with a combination of seven specialist batsmen and five specialist bowlers.
"Being able to field seven specialist batsmen was a key factor in both the Test series successes against England and Australia, most notably at Adelaide where we had to bat long and deep to get ourselves out of trouble.
"AB de Villiers has kept wicket exceptionally well since taking the gloves from Mark Boucher and having two quality all-rounders among our top five batsmen has added a great deal to the side. Thami Tsolekile remains our back-up wicketkeeper should the need arise.
"It was a tough call to leave out Imran Tahir but we have to acknowledge that Robin Peterson put up an outstanding performance at Perth where he made a significant contribution to our victory. Imran remains very much in our plans going forward."
South Africa Test squad: Graeme Smith (captain), Hashim Amla, AB de Villiers, Francois du Plessis, Dean Elgar, Jacques Kallis, Rory Kleinveldt, Morne Morkel, Alviro Petersen, Robin Peterson, Vernon Philander, Jacques Rudolph, Dale Steyn
© Cricket World 2012
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