South Africa omit key trio for Sri Lanka ODI series
JOHANNESBURG: South Africa will be without a number of key players for their three One-day Internationals in Sri Lanka next month, but expect their big guns to return for the Twenty20 series that follows as they build towards the World Cup in the United Arab Emirates.
South Africa play three ODIs in Colombo from Sept 2 to 7, but will be without leading batsman Quinton de Kock (rested), powerful middle-order hitter David Miller (hamstring injury) and seamer Lungi Ngidi (personal reasons).
All-rounder Dwaine Pretorius will return to the squads for both series after an injury lay-off that saw him miss successful tours to West Indies and Ireland in recent months.
The missing trio has been included in the expanded 19-man squad for the T20 Internationals, which will also be staged in Colombo from Sept 10 to 14, a month before the World Cup starts.
But former captain Faf du Plessis was a notable omission for the white-ball tour. The 37-year-old retired from Test cricket in February, but said he remained available for South Africa in white-ball cricket. He has not played for the country in any format since.
“The next two years are ICC T20 World Cup years,” du Plessis said in a statement when he announced his retirement. “Because of this, my focus is shifting to this format and I want to play as much of it as possible around the world so that I can be the best player I can possibly be.”
Victor Mpitsang, convener of the South African selectors, said there had been ‘conversations’ with du Plessis.
“He was available for the Sri Lanka tour, but the selectors felt there would be more benefit in giving experience of sub-continental conditions to the group of players who have represented South Africa in recent series.”
Mpitsang added du Plessis would be considered for World Cup selection.
South Africa won their T20 series against world champions West Indies and Ireland, and will once again be captained by Temba Bavuma in both formats.
ODI: Temba Bavuma (captain), Junior Dala, Beuran Hendricks, Reeza Hendricks, Heinrich Klaasen, George Linde, Janneman Malan, Keshav Maharaj, Aiden Markram, Wiaan Mulder, Anrich Nortje, Andile Phehlukwayo, Dwaine Pretorius, Kagiso Rabada, Tabraiz Shamsi, Rassie van der Dussen, Kyle Verreynne, Lizaad Williams.
Twenty20: Temba Bavuma (captain), Quinton de Kock, Bjorn Fortuin, Beuran Hendricks, Reeza Hendricks, Heinrich Klaasen, George Linde, Keshav Maharaj, Sisanda Magala, Aiden Markram, David Miller, Wiaan Mulder, Lungi Ngidi, Anrich Nortje, Dwaine Pretorius, Kagiso Rabada, Tabraiz Shamsi, Rassie van der Dussen, Lizaad Williams.
Published in Dawn, August 13th, 2021