Cricket South Africa have announced Test squad for the first two matches of their home series against England this December. Dropping Imran Tahir and Simon Harmer, South Africa have included only one spinner, Dane Piedt. They have gone on to drop specialist wicket-keeper Dane Vilas and AB de Villiers will be assigned the additional responsibility of keeping wickets. This step was taken to balance their side and de Villiers have agreed on it.
Linda Zondi, South Africa”s convener of selectors: “AB saw the need that the team has now and understands that if he keeps wicket, it allows us to have an extra batsman, “When we became No. 1, we had seven batters. It gives us an extra edge. We are very grateful from a selection point of view that he has agreed to do it. He is the ultimate team man.”
Vernon Philander, who was injured since India series has been ruled out of the first two Tests for the unresolved ankle injury. Dale Steyn, Morne Morkel, Kyle Abbott and Kagiso Rabada are the four seamers in South Africa’s 13-man squad. Rilee Rossouw is set to make debut if everything goes right.
The first Test starts on Boxing Day in Durban, while the second in Cape Town starts on January 2.
South Africa squad for first two Tests: Hashim Amla (C), AB de Villiers (VC) (WK), Kyle Abbott, Temba Bavuma, JP Duminy, Faf du Plessis, Dean Elgar, Morne Morkel, Dane Piedt, Kagiso Rabada, Rilee Rossouw, Dale Steyn, Stiaan van Zyl.
AB de Villiers will return to the role of wicket-keeper after two years and this will allow South Africa play an extra batsman after their poor show against the Indians recently. If Steyn can be fit out of his groin injury then Kyle Abbott, Morne Morkel and Dale Steyn will make the perfect fast bowling trio for the first Test.