South Africa in England 2012 July 13, 2012

Injured de Lange out of England tour

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Marchant de Lange has become the second South Africa player to withdraw from the Test series against England through injury in the opening week of the tour. De Lange sustained a lower back injury during the Twenty20 tri-series in Zimbabwe last month and has not recovered. He will be replaced by Albie Morkel.

South Africa had already suffered a major blow on Tuesday, when wicketkeeper Mark Boucher sustained a career-threatening injury and was forced to retire from international cricket.

"Marchant has been diagnosed with a lower-back stress fracture and will require at least six weeks rest and rehabilitation," Brandon Jackson, the team's physiotherapist, said. "A bone scan was done after his lower-back pain worsened in the past week, showing inflammation in the bottom vertebrae of the spine."

De Lange was not part of the first-choice XI and was only expected to play if there was an injury to one of Dale Steyn, Vernon Philander or Morne Morkel. He has played just two Tests - his debut against Sri Lanka in Durban, where he took 7 for 84 in the first-innings and a match against New Zealand in Wellington that Jacques Kallis had to sit out with a stiff neck - but has been part of three South Africa squads.

Injuries have been a major part of de Lange's short career. He broke both his ankles at Under-19 level and could not represent South Africa at age-group level. His back problem is believed to have started during the IPL, when de Lange was contracted to the Kolkata Knight Riders.

South Africa have back up in the bowling department even in De Lange's absence. Left-arm seamer Lonwabo Tsotsobe remains part of the squad and has already shown match readiness. Tsotsobe was the leading wicket-taker in South Africa's practice match against Somerset earlier in the week, taking 3 for 46 in the first innings.

He will have now competition from Albie Morkel, who will join up with the squad later on Friday. Morkel was already in England, where he was playing for Somerset in the Friends Life t20 and was called an "ideal replacement" for De Lange by convenor of selectors, Andrew Hudson.

"He comes into the squad with invaluable knowledge and experience of UK conditions," Hudson said. "He has a good first-class record and his ability to swing the ball and to contribute with the bat lower down the order gave us the extra incentive to rope him in."

Morkel played five matches in last season's SuperSport Series and scored 326 runs, including a century and two half-centuries, at an average of 46.57. He also took 17 wickets at an average of 27.58. He has only played one Test for South Africa, in 2009, against Australia in Cape Town.

Firdose Moonda is ESPNcricinfo's South Africa correspondent

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Pratchett on July 16, 2012, 19:39 GMT

    @sirviv1973 You don't bat your best batsman at #7. AB should move UP the order, not down!

  • AKS286 on July 16, 2012, 17:29 GMT

    @Meety re capslock i think you are pointing RAHULCRICKET007. damn true hahhahaha

  • JG2704 on July 16, 2012, 11:40 GMT

    @Meety on (July 15 2012, 11:22 AM GMT) - As I posted in UAE , there were occasions when I feel an extra bowling option would have given us a better opportunity of winning. Can't remember which test it was but there was one where we had them 4 down and still trailing and we could not take that vital 5th wicket. Even at home I believe we could improve with 5 bowlers.I know that it was a bit of a freak inns but our 4 bowlers could not finish off the last WI innings when we had them in huge trouble at 7 down. Re your question , I believe that an extra bowler would reduce the opposition score by more than the 5th batsman increases ours

  • Meety on July 15, 2012, 11:29 GMT

    @SirViv1973 - know where you are coming from, but unless there has been a MAJOR change in Management in the CSA, I would say that over time they are conservative. Therefore I would say that they want at least 7 reasonable batsmen. Over the years - they have been chockful of good allrounders, such that they were batting centric (remebering when Klusenser batted at #7 or #8 as a specialist bowler who batted (should of been @#6). AB may well bat @ #5, - you are probably right, I think they'll be killing the golden goose if they do! @JG2704 - re: Capslock - I'd be the LAST person on this site to worry about that. I think it really emphasises a point well, it ONLY sucks when people write an ENTIRE paragraph in capslock! IMO - 5-1-5 only works (over time) when you are CHASING a win - eg: behind 2-1 with a test to go!

  • Meety on July 15, 2012, 11:22 GMT

    @ JG2704 - mate you are 100% right regarding any batsmen who has saved England from #6 in recent times. That being said 1) does that not mean they SHOULDN'T be saved from #6, AND 2) If the bowlers are doing the job, do they really need EXTRA support? I discussed with @trueman's Ghost (love that monica), the merits of Siddle where I said he had heart & made out it was important but maybe something not overly coverted in England cricket of late because you haven't really needed it from bowlers! ATM - the average Eng fan wants nothing but skill from their bowlers as they are regularly are taking 20 wickets per match. That would suggest to me that at the very least, on the home front england only need 4 bowlers, (accept a totally different arguement in Asia/UAE). So, IMO, the question is, would the extra bowler lead to more wickets such that the long term lack of runs will suffice? I say no, bearing in mind that Prior (done well so far) is outperforming his FC stats!

  • JG2704 on July 14, 2012, 15:05 GMT

    @Meety on (July 14 2012, 11:01 AM GMT) I feel it's horses for courses. With your guys you have Hussey coming in at 6 and the guy is a real tower with the bat. I've done the stats of how our number 6 has performed over recent years and how the batting depth has only really happened on paper and I'LL ASK ALL ENG FANS TO NAME AN OCCASION IN THE LAST FEW YEARS WHEN THE 6TH ENGLISH BATSMAN HAS CHANGED THE COURSE OF AN INNINGS? Sorry to do the capsloc bit there. I would not mind if we had a tower at number 6 and although I've always liked the 5/1/5 formation I'd be happy to go along with those who like the 6/1/4 formation if they could give me an example of where we've won a test or even saved a test in the last 2 or 3 years which we would not have/unlikely have done with a 5/1/5. It could be that Ravi comes in and proves me wrong and I'll be happy if that happens but it seem we've been obsessively looking for a number 6 when we could have been adding to our bowling unit instead.

  • AKS286 on July 14, 2012, 14:25 GMT

    smith, petersen, amla, kallis, AB, rudolph, duminy, der merve/ontong/tsotsobe, philander,morkel, styen

  • SirViv1973 on July 14, 2012, 13:19 GMT

    @Meety, I agree re dropping AB down the order to 7, but i've got a feeling the saffers are gonna leave him at 5 for the first test at least.

  • AKS286 on July 14, 2012, 11:36 GMT

    no mclaren no albie. justin ontong or van der merve. klienveldt is better option to fill de lange. agree with @whatawicket.

  • AdrianVanDenStael on July 14, 2012, 11:23 GMT

    It's roused less comment than Boucher's retirement (naturally) but potentially this is a real blow for South Africa. De Lange is a more than useful back up bowler and a bit of an unknown quantity. He could have rattled a few English batsmen.

  • Pratchett on July 16, 2012, 19:39 GMT

    @sirviv1973 You don't bat your best batsman at #7. AB should move UP the order, not down!

  • AKS286 on July 16, 2012, 17:29 GMT

    @Meety re capslock i think you are pointing RAHULCRICKET007. damn true hahhahaha

  • JG2704 on July 16, 2012, 11:40 GMT

    @Meety on (July 15 2012, 11:22 AM GMT) - As I posted in UAE , there were occasions when I feel an extra bowling option would have given us a better opportunity of winning. Can't remember which test it was but there was one where we had them 4 down and still trailing and we could not take that vital 5th wicket. Even at home I believe we could improve with 5 bowlers.I know that it was a bit of a freak inns but our 4 bowlers could not finish off the last WI innings when we had them in huge trouble at 7 down. Re your question , I believe that an extra bowler would reduce the opposition score by more than the 5th batsman increases ours

  • Meety on July 15, 2012, 11:29 GMT

    @SirViv1973 - know where you are coming from, but unless there has been a MAJOR change in Management in the CSA, I would say that over time they are conservative. Therefore I would say that they want at least 7 reasonable batsmen. Over the years - they have been chockful of good allrounders, such that they were batting centric (remebering when Klusenser batted at #7 or #8 as a specialist bowler who batted (should of been @#6). AB may well bat @ #5, - you are probably right, I think they'll be killing the golden goose if they do! @JG2704 - re: Capslock - I'd be the LAST person on this site to worry about that. I think it really emphasises a point well, it ONLY sucks when people write an ENTIRE paragraph in capslock! IMO - 5-1-5 only works (over time) when you are CHASING a win - eg: behind 2-1 with a test to go!

  • Meety on July 15, 2012, 11:22 GMT

    @ JG2704 - mate you are 100% right regarding any batsmen who has saved England from #6 in recent times. That being said 1) does that not mean they SHOULDN'T be saved from #6, AND 2) If the bowlers are doing the job, do they really need EXTRA support? I discussed with @trueman's Ghost (love that monica), the merits of Siddle where I said he had heart & made out it was important but maybe something not overly coverted in England cricket of late because you haven't really needed it from bowlers! ATM - the average Eng fan wants nothing but skill from their bowlers as they are regularly are taking 20 wickets per match. That would suggest to me that at the very least, on the home front england only need 4 bowlers, (accept a totally different arguement in Asia/UAE). So, IMO, the question is, would the extra bowler lead to more wickets such that the long term lack of runs will suffice? I say no, bearing in mind that Prior (done well so far) is outperforming his FC stats!

  • JG2704 on July 14, 2012, 15:05 GMT

    @Meety on (July 14 2012, 11:01 AM GMT) I feel it's horses for courses. With your guys you have Hussey coming in at 6 and the guy is a real tower with the bat. I've done the stats of how our number 6 has performed over recent years and how the batting depth has only really happened on paper and I'LL ASK ALL ENG FANS TO NAME AN OCCASION IN THE LAST FEW YEARS WHEN THE 6TH ENGLISH BATSMAN HAS CHANGED THE COURSE OF AN INNINGS? Sorry to do the capsloc bit there. I would not mind if we had a tower at number 6 and although I've always liked the 5/1/5 formation I'd be happy to go along with those who like the 6/1/4 formation if they could give me an example of where we've won a test or even saved a test in the last 2 or 3 years which we would not have/unlikely have done with a 5/1/5. It could be that Ravi comes in and proves me wrong and I'll be happy if that happens but it seem we've been obsessively looking for a number 6 when we could have been adding to our bowling unit instead.

  • AKS286 on July 14, 2012, 14:25 GMT

    smith, petersen, amla, kallis, AB, rudolph, duminy, der merve/ontong/tsotsobe, philander,morkel, styen

  • SirViv1973 on July 14, 2012, 13:19 GMT

    @Meety, I agree re dropping AB down the order to 7, but i've got a feeling the saffers are gonna leave him at 5 for the first test at least.

  • AKS286 on July 14, 2012, 11:36 GMT

    no mclaren no albie. justin ontong or van der merve. klienveldt is better option to fill de lange. agree with @whatawicket.

  • AdrianVanDenStael on July 14, 2012, 11:23 GMT

    It's roused less comment than Boucher's retirement (naturally) but potentially this is a real blow for South Africa. De Lange is a more than useful back up bowler and a bit of an unknown quantity. He could have rattled a few English batsmen.

  • Meety on July 14, 2012, 11:03 GMT

    Hate hearing about other acers being injured. If I was a Saffa fan, I'd be spewing his injury came in a T20.

  • Meety on July 14, 2012, 11:01 GMT

    @JG2704 - you really love the 5 bowler concept. Assuming Kallis (as SirViv says) is 100% fit, I really don't think they require 5 specialist bowlers. @SirViv1973 - I think the Saffas will be better off dropping AB down the order, as in the 3 tests he was designated he averaged 22. Small sample size, but I really think that the Saffas need to ensure he rests up, particularly should the England batsmen keep them in the field for an extended period of time. I'd move Rudolph & Duminy up a slot & AB @ #7.

  • SirViv1973 on July 14, 2012, 8:20 GMT

    @JG274, I would have been very surprised if South Africa would have gone with De Lange as part of a 5 man attack it would have left their tail too long. Phillander would have had to bat at 7 and his test best (albeit in a short career) is 29 and he only ave in the mid 20's in the 1st class game. They also have Kallis who is still a more than useful if slightly reluctant 4th seamer. I'm sure when MB got injured they decided that 7 batsman and 4 bowlers was the way to go with AB keeping. I think this is backed up by the call up of A Morkel rather than an out and out fast bowler like Parnell. I suspect Rudolph will bat 6 at the oval with Duminy 7, but A Morkel gives then an option as cover in this area and his bowling could prove useful if required. Only time will tell if De Lange loss is significant, if SAF were to loose 1 of the main 3 seamers or MM continues if erractic form then he may will prove to be, but if the big 3 all fire then he wouldn't have gotten a game.

  • on July 14, 2012, 3:43 GMT

    With AB keeping wickets, duminy or rudolph at 6, albie could bat at 7 and SA can have 5 bowlers.

  • Robster1 on July 14, 2012, 0:55 GMT

    More bad news for SA - is this tour cursed ? De Lange a big loss indeed on top of Boucher flying home.

  • JG2704 on July 13, 2012, 19:55 GMT

    I wonder if SA (presuming AB is WK) were thinking about playing 4 seamers plus Tahir? I was thinking DL would just have been a squad player but maybe he'd have been part of a 5 pronged attack?

  • SagirParkar on July 13, 2012, 18:17 GMT

    ohh dear lord.. this is not good news for SA at all... hope they wont need a 4th seamer and that Steyn, Morkel Snr and Philander along with Tahir can tighten the screws on England..

    as for Albie, i think Ryan McLaren would have been a better replacement, atleast for the test squad..

  • SurlyCynic on July 13, 2012, 17:44 GMT

    It might be a good thing to keep De Lange out of England, or they may have signed him up like other players who played for SA U21.

  • on July 13, 2012, 17:16 GMT

    Albie Morkel is a good choice. He has played in only one test (against Australia) in 2009 and scored a fifty not out. Took the wicket of Ponting with a beauty. He has also scored good runs for the Titans in the longer version of the game this year. His batting is better than his bowling but he swings the ball. Dhoni had a lot of confidence in him for two years. He could easily replace Rudolph in the tests.

  • xylo on July 13, 2012, 16:59 GMT

    Did I see someone mention Albie Morkel being compared to Irfan Pathan? Irfan Pathan has had his luckiest day!

  • whatawicket on July 13, 2012, 16:36 GMT

    ablie morkle must be the luckiest SA cricketer this guys a joke i thought the saffas had finally got rid of him. even in odi and T20 his bowling stinks and his batting only once in a blue moon. i though they had an abundance of quality quicks. even dernbach is better but as some of you call him a saffa you can have him back. parnell for sure would be a better choice. ask england who they would rather face of the 2.

  • Alexk400 on July 13, 2012, 16:30 GMT

    Picking albie morkel is like picking irfan pathan. he is neither bowler or batsman. I never seen him hitting big or scoring runs. It seems like albies fans are living in another universe. He probably hit like oram does now a days once in a blue moon when no one watching and opposition lost interest in the game.

  • MNGholfers on July 13, 2012, 15:57 GMT

    For an English wet summer, Albie should be drafted into the playing 11, his first-class average is 45 as a batsmen and bowling is a touch under 30. He is forever been seen as a shorter version player meantime he is an even more destructive first-class player!! He can change the course of a game in a session especially in England where low scoring Tests could most likely be served up this summer!! At least Hudson is starting to make some sensible decisions! Now the team needs to groom Quintin de Kock as Boucher's successor, the youngster is a very destructive batsman and in time will also be an awesome keeper! TT is for me just a very short term solution, he is a very gutsy player and has done well in the recent past, but I'm sure no team in the world will be to worried to see him in a SA line up. Albie should be utilized in the test matches!!!!!

  • maddy20 on July 13, 2012, 15:56 GMT

    Parnell? Are you kidding? He has been in horrible form right now. TsoTsobe or Albie would be the ideal replacement. Albie's lower order batting is one aspect they will be looking at in seaming conditions of England.

  • on July 13, 2012, 15:19 GMT

    Unfortunate for De Lange and SACricket, I hope he gets well soon, I think Parnel would have been good as well but with Morkel there, his height on UK wickets could be very important. There is also more opportunity for the legspinner.

  • bumbles11 on July 13, 2012, 15:09 GMT

    SA are having aunlucky tour already, agree odd to ignore Parnell or Maclaren? Kent are not the strongest side in England and having lost the toss I would have thought SA attack would have skittled kent out for 200 in a day.

    SA bowlers will find it 100% harder against Cook, Strauss, Bell, Trott, Prior and an inform Bopara on Thursday at the Oval.

    I can't see England losing the series but SA may win 1 Test if they wim the toss at Leeds, its cloudy and skittle England out early....which is what happened in 08 and India did this in 06.

  • on July 13, 2012, 15:03 GMT

    A 21 year old guy, is being replaced by a 31 year old guy -- perverse idea of planning and/or building for the future! Thought such "fast reverse drives" happens only in the selection for the Indian team! Srikkant, you have competition!

  • AKS286 on July 13, 2012, 14:47 GMT

    klienveldt is the better option.

  • B.C.G on July 13, 2012, 14:36 GMT

    Why Morkel?Albie is just a slogger & his bowling is even worse.Mclaren or Kleinveldt should have been drafted instead.

  • i_witnessed_2011 on July 13, 2012, 14:36 GMT

    Morkel is a good replacement. In my opinion , He is a good replacement for Mark Boucher (Assuming ABD will be the wicket Keeper). He should be selected in the playing 11.

  • loki897 on July 13, 2012, 14:16 GMT

    Horibble news for South Africa. Plus, Albie Morkel in everyone's mind is an allrounde. He is similar to Darren Sammy with more pace and lively batting but Sammy is a great leader.

  • on July 13, 2012, 13:59 GMT

    where is wyne parnel , he is doing v good job far A side

  • on July 13, 2012, 13:57 GMT

    The first really good selection since the one of Philander last year. Albie Morkel in my view should play in the place of Rudolph in the tests. He only played in one test (against Australia) some years back and scored a good fifty and took Ponting's wicket with a great ball. He is a matured cricketer now and has learned a lot about himself in the IPL. The fact that Dhoni rates him highly says it all. I know test cricket is a lot different from 20/20 or the one day game but Morkel will deliver with bat and ball. This will take the pressure off Jacques Kallis in the bowling department and allow him to concentrate on his batting - a key factor in the series. Rudolph looks out of form to me and I would be surprised if he makes good scores. (I hope I am wrong, of course!)

  • on July 13, 2012, 13:47 GMT

    man, this is now getting on my nerves. another fast bowler injured without hardly doing any bowling.

  • jmcilhinney on July 13, 2012, 13:40 GMT

    That's a real shame for the young man. He may not have got a game anyway, assuming that all the other front-line bowlers stay healthy, but even just being part of the squad for the tour would have been good experience. I'd be very surprised if he doesn't have a big part to play in SA's future.

  • bestbuddy on July 13, 2012, 13:37 GMT

    um, huh? Why are we replacing a bowler with a batting allrounder? Mclaren is a far better bowler AND in form. Strange decision...

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  • bestbuddy on July 13, 2012, 13:37 GMT

    um, huh? Why are we replacing a bowler with a batting allrounder? Mclaren is a far better bowler AND in form. Strange decision...

  • jmcilhinney on July 13, 2012, 13:40 GMT

    That's a real shame for the young man. He may not have got a game anyway, assuming that all the other front-line bowlers stay healthy, but even just being part of the squad for the tour would have been good experience. I'd be very surprised if he doesn't have a big part to play in SA's future.

  • on July 13, 2012, 13:47 GMT

    man, this is now getting on my nerves. another fast bowler injured without hardly doing any bowling.

  • on July 13, 2012, 13:57 GMT

    The first really good selection since the one of Philander last year. Albie Morkel in my view should play in the place of Rudolph in the tests. He only played in one test (against Australia) some years back and scored a good fifty and took Ponting's wicket with a great ball. He is a matured cricketer now and has learned a lot about himself in the IPL. The fact that Dhoni rates him highly says it all. I know test cricket is a lot different from 20/20 or the one day game but Morkel will deliver with bat and ball. This will take the pressure off Jacques Kallis in the bowling department and allow him to concentrate on his batting - a key factor in the series. Rudolph looks out of form to me and I would be surprised if he makes good scores. (I hope I am wrong, of course!)

  • on July 13, 2012, 13:59 GMT

    where is wyne parnel , he is doing v good job far A side

  • loki897 on July 13, 2012, 14:16 GMT

    Horibble news for South Africa. Plus, Albie Morkel in everyone's mind is an allrounde. He is similar to Darren Sammy with more pace and lively batting but Sammy is a great leader.

  • i_witnessed_2011 on July 13, 2012, 14:36 GMT

    Morkel is a good replacement. In my opinion , He is a good replacement for Mark Boucher (Assuming ABD will be the wicket Keeper). He should be selected in the playing 11.

  • B.C.G on July 13, 2012, 14:36 GMT

    Why Morkel?Albie is just a slogger & his bowling is even worse.Mclaren or Kleinveldt should have been drafted instead.

  • AKS286 on July 13, 2012, 14:47 GMT

    klienveldt is the better option.

  • on July 13, 2012, 15:03 GMT

    A 21 year old guy, is being replaced by a 31 year old guy -- perverse idea of planning and/or building for the future! Thought such "fast reverse drives" happens only in the selection for the Indian team! Srikkant, you have competition!