South Africa announce squads for India tour
Between 2nd October and 3rd December, South Africa will play three T20Is, five ODIs and four Test matches against India.
Considering the spin-friendly nature of sub-continent wickets, the South African selectors have included three frontline spin bowlers in Imran Tahir, Dane Piedt and Simon Harmer for the Test matches.
Hashim Amla will lead the Test side with the core batting line-up formed by regular players like AB de Villiers, JP Duminy and Faf du Plessis.
The bowling attack will be led by the duo of Dale Steyn and Morne Morkel, while Vernon Philander, and Kasigo Rabada will be the other pacers.
Less experienced players Stiaan Van Zyl, Temba Bavuma and Dean Elgar have also been included while Dane Vilas, who replaced Quinton de Kock during the recent Tests against Bangladesh is selected as the wicket-keeper.
Convenor of selectors for South Africa Linda Zondi stated that they wanted to keep all the options open when making the final decision.
“We want to keep all our options open for the Test series.
“We also have JP Duminy as an option in this department and I believe we have covered all our bases by having both holding and attacking spin options in our squad.
“It is good to have Dane (Piedt) back from his injury and Imran was our number one spinner for our last Test series on the sub-continent against Sri Lanka.
“It is very important that we maintain consistency in our selections and Dane (Vilas) hardly had the chance to make his mark in Bangladesh where the series was so badly disrupted by the weather.”
Tahir also makes a comeback into the T20I squad, while Chris Morris and Marchant de Lange have been recalled.
Zondi wants to test the bench strength of the bowling department ahead of the 2016 World T20 tournament.
“The tour to India is a very long one.
“It lasts for more than two months and we can’t expect Dale Steyn and Morne Morkel to field too heavy a workload.
“Chris comes back after a spell out through injury while Marchant has done well at the IPL.
“It is an ideal opportunity to explore our back-up options ahead of the ICC World Twenty20 which will be played in India.
“It is vital in this format to get wickets up front."
Zondi also wanted Tahir to get as much match practice under his belt before the T20 World Cup, while leg-spinner Eddie Leie is given another chance in the shortest format.
“Imran is our No. 1 bowler in the T20 format and we need him to play every series between now and the ICC tournament while Eddie Leie will be our second spinner as we want to have another look at what he can do.”
Du Plessis will lead the T20I squad, whereas de Kock will has been recalled to take up the duties behind the stumps in both the T20Is and the ODIs.
Uncapped player Khaya Zondo has been called up in place of injured batsman Rilee Rossouw, who is expected to be fit in time for the ODI series.
When South Africa last toured India in the 2009-10 season, they lost the three-match ODI series 2-1, whereas the two-match Test series was drawn 1-1.
South Africa Test squad:
Hashim Amla (c), AB de Villiers, Temba Bavuma, JP Duminy, Faf du Plessis, Dean Elgar, Simon Harmer, Imran Tahir, Morne Morkel, Vernon Philander, Dane Piedt, Kagiso Rabada, Dale Steyn, Stiaan van Zyl, Dane Vilas
South Africa ODI squad:
AB de Villiers (c), Kyle Abbott, Hashim Amla, Farhaan Behardien, Quinton de Kock, JP Duminy, Faf du Plessis, Imran Tahir, David Miller, Morne Morkel, Chris Morris, Aaron Phangiso, Kagiso Rabada, Rilee Rossouw, Dale Steyn
South Africa T20I squad:
Faf du Plessis (c), Kyle Abbott, Hashim Amla, Farhaan Behardien, Quinton de Kock, Marchant de Lange, AB de Villiers, JP Duminy, Imran Tahir, Eddie Leie, David Miller, Chris Morris, Kagiso Rabada, David Wiese, Khaya Zondo
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