Sri Lanka in South Africa 2011-12 December 24, 2011

Philander strains left knee

Vernon Philander has suffered a mild strain to his left knee and will be monitored before being cleared to play in the second Test against Sri Lanka in Durban that starts on December 26. Philander picked up the injury while bowling in the nets on Saturday and was treated immediately.

"He came off and received the necessary treatment from the physiotherapist, including icing and strapping," Mohammed Moosajee, South African team manager said. "He will be treated overnight and he will come and bowl tomorrow, once some of the swelling and inflammation settles and if anything untoward happens, we will decide. Right now, we are still confident he will be ready for the Test."

Philander has made an explosive start to his Test career, starting against Australia last month. He is only the fifth player to claim four five-wicket hauls in his first three Tests and the first South African to achieve the feat. After being dropped from the national team three years ago, it was a comeback that drew praises even from his former critics. Philander credited the last two-seasons of first-class cricket, in which he took 80 wickets in the SuperSport Series, with grooming him for success at a higher level.

The only other seamer in South Africa's squad is Lonwabo Tsotsobe, who was recalled after missing the Australia series with a side strain. He was assessed by CSA's medical team on Friday and although he has recovered from the injury, he is in the final stages of his rehabilitation and is not fully ready to play a Test just yet. "He is bowling at 90-95% now," Moosajee said.

Marchant de Lange, who was part of the squad for the first Test, has been released to his franchise, the Titans. He is scheduled to play in their first-class match against the Lions that starts on Tuesday, but may be recalled to the national side if necessary.

Firdose Moonda is ESPNcricinfo's South Africa correspondent

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