January 18, 2000

Donald in row over one/day squad and Rhodes returns

Centurion - Allan Donald may have been involved in a verbal fracas with national selection panel convener Rushdie Magiet over his omission from the South African side for the limited-overs international triangular series. He is committed to playing both Tests against India during the short tour of the Asian sub-continent next month.

Although Donald had left the "door open" for the two India matches he had hoped to be included in the team for the triangular series, also involving England and Zimbabwe. It starts at the Wanderers on Friday with South Africa playing their northern neighbours.

With Paul Adams ruled out for four weeks with a fracture of the middle finger, the selectors have, to an extent, been thrown a lifeline as it is understood he was out of the side for the first three games. Now the left-arm spinner will be back just in time for the India tour.

As it is the selectors, when announcing the side yesterday, have not, as was expected, shown long-term planning. They brought back Henry Williams, the 32-year-old Boland opening bowler and leading wicket-taker in the SuperSport Series, after discarding him during the West Indies LOIs last season.

The side was named for the first three matches of the series with a revision after the game against England at Newlands today week. There are a couple of surprise omissions in Steve Elworthy, a member of the World Cup squad and who also went to Kenya last year, and Roger Telemachus, while Nicky Boje, Jonty Rhodes and Pieter Strydom are in along with Dale Benkenstein being recalled.

As for Donald, the fast bowler known as "White Lightening" on Monday night told the team's manager, Goolam Raja, of his desire to be part of the side but only for the back to back Tests in Mumbai and Bangalore.

"He (Donald) called me from home in Bloemfontein and said he would be happy to play in India for just the two Tests," Raja said. "We are all most happy with his decision to join us in India." Making himself available means he can to take his 300th Test wicket this season in Mumbai or Bangalore.

The squad is: Hansie Cronje (capt), Dale Benkenstein, Nicky Boje, Mark Boucher, Herschelle Gibbs, Mornantau Hayward, Jacques Kallis, Gary Kirsten, Lance Klusener, Shaun Pollock, Jonty Rhodes, Pieter Strydom, David Terbrugge. (Garnett Kruger, of Eastern Province, will travel with the side to the first three games).