Elgar, Kleinveldt in squad for Sri Lanka ODIs
Dean Elgar, the uncapped left-handed batsman, and seamer Rory Kleinveldt have been included in South Africa's 14-man squad for the first two one-day internationals against Sri Lanka. The series will also be the first chance for AB de Villiers as captain after injury meant he missed the matches against Australia.
Elgar, the Knights opening batsman, is the only rookie in the squad. Kleinveldt has already represented South Africa in two Twenty20 internationals, the latest one during the 2009 ICC World Twenty20 in the Caribbean.
The squad includes three changes from the one that faced Australia at home recently. de Villiers will take over the wicketkeeping duties from Mark Boucher alongside his captaincy duties, while Elgar replaces batsman David Miller and the selectors chose to switch legspinner Imran Tahir for Kleinveldt.
"We have chosen a squad of 14 for the first two games only," Andrew Hudson, the Cricket South Africa's selection convener, said. "Those members of the squad who are not involved in the final Test match in Newlands next week will be released to play for their franchises before the squad assembles on January 9.
"There have been a number of batsmen showing good form in domestic cricket, and Elgar fully deserves his opportunity," Hudson added. "He was the leading run-scorer in the One-Day Cup (567 runs) and also had the best average (81). In addition he gives us very useful bowling options as a left-arm spinner.
"Kleinveldt played an important role with the ball in helping the Cobras to win the One-Day Cup and he also has a lot of potential as a lower-order power hitter." Kleinveldt was the second-highest wicket-taker for the Cobras, taking 13 wickets in nine matches.
With Johan Botha and Robin Peterson the two specialist spinners in the side, Hudson said the committee didn't feel the need to include Tahir, even though he adds variety with his legspin.
"We feel we won't need three frontline spinners in South African conditions, so it makes sense to change the bowling balance of the squad slightly," Hudson said.
The first match starts on January 11 at Boland Park, Paarl.