South Africa reveal World Cup hand
South Africa have revealed their likely World Cup line-up, after announcing a 15-man squad for their five-match one-day international series against Pakistan, which gets underway at Centurion on Sunday.
The squad includes seven black players, meeting the World Cup target announced by Gerald Majola, Cricket South Africa's chief executive, in February 2005.
No mention, however, was made of the target by Cricket SA in a statement announcing the squad for the Pakistan series. Selection convener Haroon Lorgat said: "We are confident in our one-day squad and have therefore retained the players that have performed for us over the past two seasons."
Thirteen of the players, including five black cricketers, were generally regarded as automatic choices. The remaining two places went to Loots Bosman and Roger Telemachus. Lorgat said the final 15-man squad for the World Cup in the West Indies would be announced on February 15, the day after the Pakistan series ends.
But South Africa's coach, Mickey Arthur, has said he wants to use the Pakistan series - South Africa's last before the World Cup - as a dress rehearsal. Changes therefore are unlikely before the final squad is named.
Bosman, 29, a hard-hitting opening batsman, and the seam bowler, Telemachus, 33, could both be regarded as marginal choices.
Bosman, who has played in seven one-day internationals with modest success, was picked as an extra batsman ahead of the experienced Boeta Dippenaar, who was man of the series when South Africa won a one-day series against West Indies in the Caribbean two seasons ago. Other players to miss out include Morne van Wyk and Alviro Petersen and JP Duminy.
Telemachus is renowned as a tough competitor. He has played in 37 one-day internationals and gained the extra bowler's position ahead of Alfonso Thomas, Dale Steyn and Johan van der Wath.
Thomas and Van Wyk were both included in a 12-man squad for a Twenty20 international in Johannesburg Friday, ahead of the one-day series. Jacques Kallis, Mark Boucher, Makhaya Ntini, Andre Nel, Andrew Hall and Charl Langeveldt are to be rested from the Twenty20 match. Herschelle Gibbs, who is serving a two-match suspension, is not eligible for the Twenty20 match or the first one-day international.
One-day squad Graeme Smith (capt), Jacques Kallis, Loots Bosman, Mark Boucher, AB de Villiers, Herschelle Gibbs, Andrew Hall, Justin Kemp, Charl Langeveldt, Andrè Nel, Makhaya Ntini, Robin Peterson, Shaun Pollock, Ashwell Prince, Roger Telemachus.
Twenty20 squad Graeme Smith (capt), Shaun Pollock, Loots Bosman, Gulam Bodi, AB de Villiers, Justin Kemp, Albie Morkel, Robin Peterson, Roger Telemachus, Alfonso Thomas, Johan van der Wath, Morne van Wyk.