Cricket South Africa, on Tuesday, named uncapped Christiaan Jonker, Junior Dala, wicketkeeper-batsman Heinrich Klaasen in the three-match Twenty20 International Series against India. In the absence of Faf du Plessis due to injury, JP Duminy will lead the Proteas.
The upcoming Australia series played a role in the hosts blooding fresh faces, Former captain and batting talisman AB de Villiers, though, will be available, “With the Test Series against Australia starting only five days after the completion of the T20 Series, it is necessary for us to rest some of the players who have featured in virtually all our international matches so far this summer,” CSA National Selection Panel Convener Linda Zondi said.
“These include Hashim Amla and Aiden Markram among the batsmen, as well as most of our frontline fast bowlers. AB de Villiers has missed quite a lot of cricket this summer so he will play in the T20 Series. We have also decided to give Imran Tahir a break. He remains our first-choice spin bowler in both white ball formats,” Zondi added.
“But, we need to give more game time to Tabraiz Shamsi and Aaron Phangiso. The next World Twenty20 is not all that far away in 2020, so it is important that we develop and examine our resources for that tournament.”
CSA also stated that performances in the domestic Ram Slam T20 played a big role in selection, “Christiaan Jonker has been one of the most explosive finishers in domestic T20 cricket in recent seasons and his selection, together with that of Junior Dala, gives players who have performed well at franchise level the opportunity to show that they can compete at the highest level. Heinrich Klaasen’s recent performance speaks for itself.
“Reeza Hendricks gets another opportunity for the same reason, having been the highest runs scorer in this season’s Ram Slam Challenge.”
JP Duminy (c), Farhaan Behardien, Junior Dala, AB de Villiers, Reeza Hendricks, Christiaan Jonker, Heinrich Klaasen (wk), David Miller, Chris Morris, Dane Paterson, Aaron Phangiso, Andile Phehlukwayo, Tabraiz Shamsi, Jon-Jon Smuts