New Zealand v South Africa 2012-13

Du Plessis captain for T20s; Tahir left out of Tests

Firdose Moonda

December 13, 2012

Comments: 66 | Text size: A | A

South Africa's Quinton de Kock celebrates after running out Craig Overton, England v South Africa, quarter-final, ICC Under-19 World Cup 2012, Townsville, August 19, 2012
Quinton de Kock is looked at as a long-term replacement for Mark Boucher © ICC/Getty

Faf du Plessis will lead South Africa in the three Twenty20 internationals against New Zealand in December. AB de Villiers, South Africa's regular limited-overs captain, is part of the squad but won't captain because his workload will be managed over the summer.

The T20 squad has four new players, including a new wicketkeeper to relieve de Villiers of his burden. Quinton de Kock, who turns 20 on Monday and was part of South Africa's most recent under-19 World Cup squad, will don the gloves.

De Kock is seen as one of the options for a permanent wicketkeeper to replace Mark Boucher in all formats. "We need to find a long-term solution because ultimately we [want] to find a top-six batter in the mould of an Adam Gilchirst to do the job in Tests," Andrew Hudson, convenor of selectors, told ESPNCricinfo.

"AB may eventually end up batting No.4 in Tests, when Jacques Kallis is not around, and if he has to take on a more senior batting role, we will need someone else to keep. It will be nice to try Quinton out - he has shown glimpses of talent and we are going to have a look at him in the shorter versions. But, that's not to say to the other keepers in the country that we have passed them by, the door is still very much open."

But it seems to have closed on Thami Tsolekile. Lions' gloveman was nationally contracted in February and touted as Boucher's replacement, but has not played since then. A source close to team management said Tsolekile would be given a run against New Zealand, but the selectors have decided otherwise. He travelled to England and Australia but was left out of the Test squad, which was also named today.

Despite all indications to the contrary, Hudson said Tsolekile remains in the plans. "He has not fallen out of favour. If anything were to happen to AB, he will play." De Villiers has had a history of lower-back problems which recurred after the England series in August, but he has declared himself fully fit.

South Africa squads

  • Twenty20 squad: Faf du Plessis (capt), Farhaan Behardien, Henry Davids, Quinton de Kock, AB de Villiers, Rory Kleinveldt, Richard Levi, David Miller, Morne Morkel, Chris Morris, Wayne Parnell, Robin Peterson, Aaron Phangiso, Dale Steyn, Lonwabo Tsotsobe.
  • Test squad: Graeme Smith (capt), Hashim Amla, AB de Villiers, Faf du Plessis, Dean Elgar, Jacques Kallis, Rory Kleinveldt, Morne Morkel, Alviro Petersen, Robin Peterson, Vernon Philander, Jacques Rudolph, Dale Steyn.

He played for Titans in their one-day cup playoff match on Sunday, and although he admitted to being "a bit stiff," he maintained that he experienced no pain. In fact, he said being in the field in that match (Heino Kuhn had the gloves) was harder on his body than wicketkeeping.

He will have to embrace fielding in the shorter formats though, with de Kock set to take over that role as part of a more youthful T20 squad. Richard Levi has been retained in the squad but with Hashim Amla rested, could open the batting with du Plessis or new-comer Henry Davids. The Titans limited-overs captain made a name for himself during the Champions League T20 as an aggressive batsman and is second on the one-day cup batting charts.

The CLT20 also shone a spotlight on left-arm spinner Aaron Phangiso. He finished as the joint second highest wicket-taker and bowled miserly spells for the Lions. Phangiso has been picked as an additional slow-bowling option to Robin Peterson. Johan Botha, who has relocated to Australia, was not considered for selection.

The Lions reached the final of the Champions League Twenty20, and will also play in the final of the one-day cup, so it's no surprise that their players are getting recognition. Allrounder Chris Morris, who travelled with the South African squad for the unofficial T20 tri-series in Zimbabwe in June, is also part of the national squad. Morris, also a big hitter, has bowled consistently in the mid-140kph this season and is the only fast-bowling all-rounder in the squad.

Wayne Parnell, who has been working on his batting, is also in the squad along with fellow left-arm seamer Lonwabo Tsotsobe. There has been a recall for middle-order batsman David Miller in the absence of the injured JP Duminy.

Hudson said South Africa will use the series against New Zealand to concentrate on their combinations, with an eye on the 2014 World Twenty20. "The mix is going to be key. There will be some of the older players that maybe we will move on from. Going into the tournament in two years' time, we want to have a mix of core and some youngsters. We need some flair and we need to bring something different to the party as opposed to just a regular side," he said.

The Test squad, though, is focused on consistency, with the same squad that defeated Australia in Perth retained for the two fixtures against New Zealand. Jacques Rudolph, who was dropped for the final match, has been picked but is unlikely to play. "We will probably look to play Dean [Elgar] and Jacques is the reserve batsman," Hudson said.

The only casualty besides Tsolekile is legspinner Imran Tahir, whose performance in Adelaide has left him needing to do some soul searching. Tahir finished with figures of 0 for 260, the most expensive figures without a wicket in Test history and was replaced with Robin Peterson, who took six wickets in Perth. "Robbie has just gone ahead of Imran, but he remains part of our plans in future," Hudson said.

South Africa have two injury concerns. Jacques Kallis is recovering from a hamstring strain, but is expected to be fit to play in the Tests as an allrounder, and Graeme Smith has bruising on his elbow. Smith was hit in the nets in the lead-up to the one-day cup playoff and will not be fit to play in the final for the Cobras, but the team management is confident he will be ready for the New Year's Test.

Firdose Moonda is ESPNcricinfo's South Africa correspondent

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© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

Posted by   on (December 16, 2012, 6:38 GMT)

Feel sorry for Tahir. Pakistan ignored him; SA gave him opportunities that players can only dream of. It just didn't pan out. Maybe the sun will shine on him again on a different day and pitch. Hopefully its just a temporary slump.

Posted by anshu.s on (December 15, 2012, 13:01 GMT)

@Yogi108, this article is about South Africa selection not abot team India,what's with this IPL bashing anyways, what kind of Indian fan are you questioning Indian fans choices, why should Indians feel apologetic about loving shorter formats of the game ?? it looks like you have no connect with the common fan who sat and watched IPL match at 4 pm in afternoon in 45 degree plus heat packing the stadiums to the maximum. As an Indian cricketfan my support is not only limited to those elite 15 playing for Team India but to all India A, u-19,cricketers playing in IPL,Ranji teams in all formats.Cricket community is a small place as Cricket being a minority sport ,so please quit the hating and love all three formats of the game.

Posted by viking_legend on (December 15, 2012, 12:00 GMT)

Awesome T20 selection of young exciting players. Its tough to drop Tahir. Aussies attacked his bowling the same way SA has been taking on spinners recently.

Posted by stormy16 on (December 14, 2012, 15:22 GMT)

I must admit didnt expect Faf to be appointed captain but its a good move and refreshing to see the selectors thinking ahead. I recently made a comment that I can see SA dominate for 10 years based on the players who dont play for the test team and alot of them are showing up in this T20 squad. De Kock is the way to go over the rest of the half based options around. Wayne Parnell hanging on by a thread I reckon but otherwise its a good squad.

Posted by   on (December 14, 2012, 14:47 GMT)

Raj - that is the keeper, he doesn't have to wear pads. Though he is wearing fielding pads under his trousers.

Posted by   on (December 14, 2012, 10:43 GMT)

It's a good decision.It'll be a new experience for du plessis and also it'll reduce workload on de villiers so he can play his natural game.

Posted by mthi4life on (December 14, 2012, 9:07 GMT)

This team is just being used to rebuild the T20 team, players like Albie Morkel (injured) Kallis (rested/injured) Amla (rested) are still part of this team.The selectors just want to see other players that are performing in the domestic scene.

Posted by Pablo123 on (December 14, 2012, 8:32 GMT)

Nameet - Albie is injured

Posted by HennopsRiverEnd on (December 14, 2012, 7:29 GMT)

No other spinner in SA is better than Imraan. How do drop a player after one dismal test. We all know all other spinners are defenders and not attackers. Bad decision

Posted by YogifromNY on (December 14, 2012, 2:33 GMT)

Regardless of whether this player should have been selected or that one not, it is very impressive that the SA selectors have an eye on the long-term when selecting their teams. This is the reason they are number 1 and why the team I support (India) is now worse than even Bangladesh: BCCI refuses to take any decisions that are based on performance and potential alone. There are regional politics to consider, plus the Indian culture is one of deference to seniority no matter how senile or useless the seniors are. Add to that sub-standard pitches that discourage bowlers and the cancer that is killing Indian cricket - namely, IPL - and you can see why Indian cricket will suffer a lingering malaise for years to come, as its fans will not boycott the "junk food" of IPL matches that is being fed to them.

Posted by Robster1 on (December 14, 2012, 0:18 GMT)

Feels as though it's a new era in the national team. Du Plessis's role seems to indicate that concerns over AB's intense workload have been heeded. Morris and de Kock are obvious selections but does anybody else wonder why Parnell keeps on being selected and Ingram - who top scored in SA's last international 20/20 - doesn't even make the 'A' squad. Is he injured ?

Posted by 2nd_Slip on (December 13, 2012, 21:31 GMT)

Neva before have I seen South Africa with such an adundance of talent.Bodes well domination of the test arena for many more years to come. But seriusly Rudolf has had his chances an has failed I think its about time he made way for another youngster who can bat.

Posted by StaalBurgher on (December 13, 2012, 20:28 GMT)

Yes, well, they don't want to be unkind to Tahir or Rudolph. Of the two I think only Tahir really has a chance to come back because South Africa's lack of attacking spinners. Rudolph... I don't think it matters how many runs he scores, unless we get hit by a slew of injuries he is unlikely to get ANOTHER run. 48 Test matches and he has never been able to establish himself as a premier batter on the international stage. There is sometihng wrong with his mental game. I liked him, sad, but what you gonna do? The stats don't lie.

Posted by IcTP on (December 13, 2012, 20:27 GMT)

@Raj Sundararaman: I think he's got his keeping pads on inside the legs of his trousers.

Posted by Fareen on (December 13, 2012, 18:02 GMT)

Very happy to see De kock. But playing elgar instead of rudolph is a huge mistake. And tahir getting the axe is surprising. But the tests will be in so it's okay but tahir must play in subcontinent conditions with/without peterson. Overall a fine team for both t20 & tests.

Posted by   on (December 13, 2012, 16:59 GMT)

@Beerjie..... its called diplomacy fella. ;). Fantastic that De Kock is getting a chance. Very highly rated.

Posted by therealutopianindigent on (December 13, 2012, 16:35 GMT)

Strangely the squads are influenced by injury concerns over batsmen. Usually the concern is with bowlers. I think the selectors have done well - Tests need conservative selection imho, but T20 is for the youngsters. It is clear that Phangiso features so heavily in future planning that the test side can for now rely on all-rounder spinners. That looks like a big future. Everyone who made contributions by doing what management asked, has been rewarded. It is not about total runs scored in tests but about what was done in each unique situation, and about consistent local super-performers. Henry Davids should've been there long ago.

The selectors are also a little bit nervous about introducing a new test batsman (Elgar) as well they may be, because test batting is the ultimate test and few spectators realise just how tough it can be.

My only worry is that if the seamers get injured the planning looks a little thin.

Posted by   on (December 13, 2012, 16:23 GMT)

Raj, it's not a weird picture, his keeping pads are underneath his trousers like many other 'keepers do nowadays!

Posted by   on (December 13, 2012, 15:20 GMT)

Exactly the outcome of the CLT20 De Kock, Phangiso and Davids. The only disspaointment is Bodi and Albie not making it to the T20 team, which would have been a cracker if they were. No sure what Levi, Behardien and Parnell did to make the cut :)

Posted by Pablo123 on (December 13, 2012, 14:31 GMT)

@ Nameet - we in SA would also like to see others in the side, but they, including Albie, are currently injured and cannot be selected.

Posted by   on (December 13, 2012, 14:28 GMT)

great catch raj sundraman

Posted by edgie on (December 13, 2012, 14:19 GMT)

feel sorry for Thami, but it was classical case of right place at the wrong time. I think though he should be used as the keeper in the ODI's, that woudl work out ok, specially if the proteas win the first few games. Glad to see Aaron, Quinton and Henry in the T20 squad, they deserve it. And re Albie, I am sorry, but Albie is not consistant enough to be included, with both bat and ball, and his batting has deteriorated badly!! Sure he will become one of those "IPL and BBL" travelling players, ala Gibbs and Alfonso Thomas. Richard Levi has another chance to prove he is no just a flat track bully, and i think this is a last gasp for David Miller. The test team looks very settled, but the backup needs to be found.

Posted by bumsonseats on (December 13, 2012, 13:46 GMT)

the saffars will always struggle when it comes to any spinner playing for them. if he goes for more than 3 an over,cannot bat or field, and struggles to take wickets. england are called for taking players from other countries even though they have a valid reason for doing that namely their parents were from the uk.the saffars went out of their way to poach this guy and even tried to play him a year early. now they find out what most of the other20 teams hes played for in a long career that hes not all that good. back to harris who cannot bat but fields not bad and bowls i guess about 2 an over so bye bye tahir welcome back harris and botha i guess.

Posted by countjimmoriarty on (December 13, 2012, 13:30 GMT)

RajSundararaman If you look properly, you'll see he's wearing shinpads inside his trousers - many keepers do this in T20 these days.

Posted by vj_gooner on (December 13, 2012, 13:27 GMT)

Seriously, Faf du Plessis as captain? He has barely played 30 matches across all formats!

Bad decision!

Posted by   on (December 13, 2012, 13:25 GMT)

Proteas have done a Pakistan here havent they? The guy has had a decent run, but only a short one and is being handed the leadership.

I beleive a player shoudl be a teams A player for a tleast 2-3 years to be given the role.

Posted by rajsarkar1980 on (December 13, 2012, 13:19 GMT)

Great job . Ind ppl shud take a leaf out of SA selectors. AB wud be under enormous pressure as wk & main bat in limited overs. Also, it gives Faf and Amla a fair chance to a bigger role. Way to go,SA....

Posted by GlobalCricketLover on (December 13, 2012, 13:16 GMT)

DeCock is a good choice, but Levi? seriously? were the selectors sleeping when he couldn't put bat to ball in T20 WC. Have they not seen him warming benches in IPL once everyone knew he was every spinner's bunny? If they had Du Plessis in his place inthe T20WC, the story could have been totally different... Even against pace, this guy is a hit and miss. I have seen his fastest centurty, but i am afraid i have seen some of his other innings as well.

Posted by D-Ascendant on (December 13, 2012, 13:11 GMT)

I don't get it. When will the selectors realize Levi is a waste of space?

Posted by   on (December 13, 2012, 13:04 GMT)

Is David Miller still not in the squad?

Posted by   on (December 13, 2012, 12:54 GMT)

Cause he is not FIT for SA team they dont select player on bases of IPL unlike the Indian Cricket Team Oops Sorry Chennai Super Kings Oops Sorry N.Srinivasan Team & yes i totally agree that he is an Over Hyped Player. I bet if he changes his country MSD will get him In "INDIAN TEST TEAM" @ Nameet Kommu

Posted by Kirstenfan on (December 13, 2012, 12:53 GMT)

How can Hudson say de Kock has shown glimpses of talent? He has shown the full spectrum of talent!

Posted by deadite11 on (December 13, 2012, 12:50 GMT)

I feel this is not good though faf performed in tests, he should get more experience in field and captaincy may cause big pressure on him. Hope he performs with this promotive moment.

Posted by Kirstenfan on (December 13, 2012, 12:49 GMT)

Davids is not the Titans captain, van Jaarsveld is

Posted by SamRoy on (December 13, 2012, 12:43 GMT)

Parnell should rather work on his bowling than his batting. Currently I think Tsotsobe is far better limited overs bowler compared to Parnell who offers 2-3 "hit me" deliveries every over. Just because Parnell will contribute 20-25 runs with the bat doesn't mean he deserves a place in the team. A bowler must do his job and that in limited overs cricket means primarily keeping the runs down and if one can a get a couple wickets, well and good. In ODIs getting 2-70 is a terrible job and 0-35 is often a very good job.

Posted by venkatesh018 on (December 13, 2012, 12:34 GMT)

Where is Marchant De Lange? Is he injured or out of form?

Posted by Baber_Baloch on (December 13, 2012, 12:31 GMT)

du plessis late entry but nice player.........................................

Posted by B.M.SAIKOT on (December 13, 2012, 12:20 GMT)

h and Imran to "remain very much in our plans going forward"? Sounds crazy considering their ages and how they took their opportunities when it really mattered. A few injuries to key players and you'll be rudely exposed through such conservative thinking.

Posted by   on (December 13, 2012, 12:10 GMT)

FTA "Tahir finished with figures of 0 for 260, the most expensive figures without a wicket in Test history".

It's really just being polite and keeping the door open no matter how remote the possibility for both Rudolph and especially Tahir. Unless something major goes wrong, you will not see either of them play at Test level again.

Quinton de Kock should be playing at Test level within a year, very much like Bouch did as a youngster. He replaces AB, AB replaces Kallis within 2 years. Kirsten making these changes now will make transition easier in 2014/15 when Kallis retires.

Posted by hst84 on (December 13, 2012, 12:07 GMT)

@beertjie: everyone cannot grasp the opportunity provided to them at crucial moments, that doesn't mean that they aren't good cricketers. We'll see Imran Tahir in a couple of years and then we'll talk if he makes his place back..

Posted by   on (December 13, 2012, 11:26 GMT)

i want 2 c albie morkel back in sa team he is hard hitter than any other player as u all saw in ipl csk hitting huge sixes

Posted by   on (December 13, 2012, 11:11 GMT)

where is albie morkel why sa team is not considering taking him

Posted by Pablo123 on (December 13, 2012, 11:10 GMT)

@ Edgie - my sentiments exactly. This is is a good squad, but could use some tweaks.

Posted by   on (December 13, 2012, 11:08 GMT)

This is a weird picture. Where are his keeping pads? He is wearing his WKing gloves!

Posted by Basil777 on (December 13, 2012, 10:51 GMT)

Excited about the inclusion of De kock ; Phagiso and Henry they entertained us in the Momentum One Series and it is a good reward for them. Immie will be back he just to need to find his groove on the international platform.

Posted by riprock on (December 13, 2012, 10:42 GMT)

Will be exciting to watch AB back in the field, whether flying at point or swaying in the deep.

Posted by Reececonrad on (December 13, 2012, 10:40 GMT)

@Srmd Gillani just wondering if you are talking about tests because Miller is nowhere near good enough to play in the test areaner yet, collin isn't ready either, elgar is ready and deserves it.

Posted by duncanmoo on (December 13, 2012, 10:27 GMT)

Quinton de Kock as a batsman alone is a good inclusion, as a future keeper he is a great prospect. Aaron Phangiso has been amazing on the local circuit I really hope he does well (Good left arm spinner in the SA setup would be like GOLD). I like varying selection, it keeps things interesting.

Posted by Beertjie on (December 13, 2012, 10:26 GMT)

Andrew Huson, how is it possible for Rudolph and Imran to "remain very much in our plans going forward"? Sounds crazy considering their ages and how they took their opportunities when it really mattered. A few injuries to key players and you'll be rudely exposed through such conservative thinking.

Posted by goldenpower on (December 13, 2012, 10:22 GMT)

du plessis selection is good. he is geniune all rounder in all formats.

Posted by   on (December 13, 2012, 10:13 GMT)

why The South African Selector Not Selected David Miller & Collin Ingram Both Better then Dean Elger

Posted by   on (December 13, 2012, 9:58 GMT)

Rudolph failed in both series.(England and Australia). Rather give Elgar another chance to prove himself in the NZ series.

Posted by electric_loco_WAP4 on (December 13, 2012, 9:46 GMT)

Why du Plessis?....... why not Robin Peterson? .... he has all round capabilities in the short formats..

Posted by   on (December 13, 2012, 9:43 GMT)

im happy with the team selection .. but im concerned what will be the role of young quinton de kock when AB is there . I guess AB will play as a batsman and serve proteas in point or gully while fielding !

Posted by bestbuddy on (December 13, 2012, 9:19 GMT)

@Bull01, the article clearly lists David Miller in the t20 squad. A really good selection though, its good to see players being rewarded for their performances, and players like Miller, de Kock and Morris are certainly worth their place in the squad

Posted by Safalicious on (December 13, 2012, 9:14 GMT)

I am surprised that Rudolph has retained his place as he has had an extended run without much success. It would have been better to have someone like de Kock, Bodi or even Miller as the extra batsman until Duminy returns. I also think that Tsotsobe would be a better bet than Kleinveld as he offers an excellent holding role while still capable of taking wickets. that is of course until de Lange returns.

Posted by edgie on (December 13, 2012, 9:14 GMT)

@satish619chandar ,I think AB should not keep in ODI's, but should keep in T20's, as that makes the T20 squad alot stronger, and there is more flexibility in playing either an extra batsman or allrounder/bowlerwhere required. I think Quinton should be the default keeper in ODI's, to not only give him valuable experience, but to also ease him into the national squad as I think he should be moulded to help ease the burden on AB. Also think Phangiso should play in the ODI's ahead of Peterson, at least for one or two games to give him experience. Miller is an interesting choice as he has not yet delivered for the Proteas, but he seems to be in good form.Test squad looks solid, though I would have maybe chosen Neil McKenzie over Rudolph. Do hope Marchant de Lange heals up well as I think he needs to be looked as back up, if not, then Chris Morris.Imran should be told to get himself fity and in form for the Proteas next overseas tours, which will be away to Sri Lanka and Pak later in 2013.

Posted by Gamla on (December 13, 2012, 9:01 GMT)

Leka!! Very glad for Faf as Cappy, Henry Davids, de Kock and Phangiso...maybe we'll see Van the Man in the ODI squad? Hope so...

Posted by BellCurve on (December 13, 2012, 8:52 GMT)

Really happy with the selections. Good job again. Hudson is a star. His role in helping SA to rise to the top should not be underestimated. Also happy with the reporting here. Moonda would have had something negative to say as always.

Posted by   on (December 13, 2012, 8:46 GMT)

very exciting T20 squad. Faf would be a good captian

Posted by tripple-Digits on (December 13, 2012, 8:38 GMT)

Tahir left out of Tests --- THATS WAY OVERDUE and as for Albe not being availble - GREAT STUFF, now AB can concentrate on using his bowlers properly and show the character of his captaincy instead of trying to be loyal to his provincial buddies and roommates--fortunately Faff has done well in the Tests..

Posted by bull01 on (December 13, 2012, 8:33 GMT)

@ Kirstenfan ... maybe its a freudian slip but there is no Miller - but Morris...? Its a pity tho that it is not David Miller - if you see his exploits in English County he would be a good bet.

Posted by KunzMan on (December 13, 2012, 8:17 GMT)

Team for T20: Davids, Levi, de Kock (wk), AB, Du Plessis, Miller, Morris, Peterson, Parnell, Phangiso, Morkel. Steyn to rest for atleast first two matches. I pick Miller ahead of Behardien..Morris over Kleinveldt...Parnell over Tsotsobe.

Posted by satish619chandar on (December 13, 2012, 8:11 GMT)

Thisi s a very big elevation for Faf. He does deserve it with his cool head. I feel it is partly to reduce the workload of ABD across formats. I ouwld still prefer ABD to drop keeping from ODI/T20 or even both formats to keep himself in better shape to keep wickets in tests. He is lending more balance to the test team as keeper.

Posted by Kirstenfan on (December 13, 2012, 8:11 GMT)

Miller, de Kock and Phangiso! Awesome stuff

Go Lions players

Posted by KunzMan on (December 13, 2012, 8:09 GMT)

That's amazing selection! I hope Kallis phases out his retirement from the formats starting with T20s now!

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