South Africa news August 13, 2013

Duminy and Parnell trial for Tests

ESPNcricinfo staff

JP Duminy and Wayne Parnell have been given opportunities to push for Test recalls after being included in South Africa's A-team to play their Indian counterparts in two four-day matches this month. Duminy has not played a Test since rupturing his Achilles' tendon in November last year, while Parnell has not featured for South Africa in over three years.

Neither player will have any doubt that they are on trial, as Duminy will effectively be going toe-to-toe with Dean Elgar for the No.7 position in the batting line-up, while Parnell will be looking to push himself ahead of Rory Kleinveldt, Kyle Abbott and Marchant de Lange for the reserve bowler's spot.

Duminy's chances of featuring in the Test side would seem higher, having already established himself in the batting line-up with a century against New Zealand on his comeback in March 2012, and making handy lower-middle order contributions during last year's tour of England. He was also part of the team which prevailed in Australia in December last year, and was due to take on a bigger role as an offspinner, but could not take part in the match after the first day as he suffered an injury.

"I had initially planned to play some four day cricket for Surrey for a couple of months but that fell through because of my contractual obligations with the Hyderabad Sunrisers who are playing in the Champions League T20 in September," Duminy said*. "This is the perfect opportunity for me to get back into the feel of four-day cricket after a long time on the sidelines,"

A six-month rehabilitation program saw Duminy miss the entire summer, which gave Faf du Plessis an opportunity to shine, as the latter emulated Duminy's series-winning century at the MCG in 2008-09, with a match-saving 110 of his own, that earned him the right to a sustained run with the senior team.

If Duminy were to make a comeback, it would most likely be at the expense of left-arm batsman Dean Elgar, who had staked his own claim in the side with an impressive 268 against Australia A in Pretoria.

Parnell, on the other hand, will only be battling for a spot on the bench, even as Vincent Barnes, the high performance manager and coach of South Africa A, told ESPNcricinfo that Parnell is "back to his best" after battling through groin and leg injuries recently.

Parnell, who bowled particularly well at the death in the Twenty20 matches during the tour of Sri Lanka, has now been earmarked for the longer version as well.

"Wayne came through the Sri Lanka tour without any injury setbacks so he has now been added to the squad. He has had a lot of injury problems and needs to play as much four-day cricket as possible," Barnes said. Impressive performances from Parnell could see him preferred over a long line of back-up bowlers.

Kleinveldt is one of them and he was also due to play in this series, but a severe cut on his toe has ruled him out. He played only one match in Sri Lanka which he finished with a bloodied boot because of a gash that re-opened.

De Lange is also injured after picking up a rib niggle during the matches against Australia A, and will be monitored closely as the new season approaches. As a result, Abbott is likely to be Parnell's only competition and as both are playing in the series, seemingly for the same spot, it has given a whole new interesting dimension to the upcoming matches.

* August 14 2pm GMT: This story has been updated with JP Duminy quotes

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • greig on August 15, 2013, 17:37 GMT

    @AKS286 Both RPetersen and Faff are horribly out of form. Surely Duminy can do the job as the go - to spinner. Also I would have Tahir instead of Petersen who is doing well recently.

    I am a huge fan of Faff but he is out of form and we need to reward players who are proving themselves.

  • Anupam on August 15, 2013, 15:39 GMT

    @ TommytuckerSaffa on (August 14, 2013, 8:54 GMT) How you forget Robin & FaF in your team ? Wherever you play 1 spinner is must required in any pitch.

  • Dummy4 on August 14, 2013, 13:39 GMT

    I don't know - for me Parnell has always been overrated. And he did NOT bowl particularly well in the final T20 against Sri Lanka. His last over was pitiful, and cost us the match.

  • Dummy4 on August 14, 2013, 10:41 GMT

    With 3 potent all rounders Dunminy, Kallis & De Villers SA have the incredible luxury of either having the extra-extra batsman at 8 or the extra quick bowler (hard to imagine Steyn, Philander, Morkel, Kallis needing back-up).

    Duminy in for Robin Peterson. Either go with 8 batters(!! JP Duminy at 8 - hard to imagine SA getting bowled out twice with that line up) OR include an extra quick like Abbott and flip a coin Faf/Elgar at no.6

  • greig on August 14, 2013, 8:54 GMT

    Parnell inclusion in the Test squad is just lip service, he is not a Test player - only T20. Duminy is there to get some batting practice and will definitely start because of his Spin.

    My test team for upcoming Tests: Smith, Peterson, Amla, King Kallis, AB de Villiers, Elgar, Duminy,Philander,Abbott, Morkel, Steyn. What a batting and bowling lineup and also the best All-rounder to ever live.

    Unfortunately Faff is horrifically out of form so he will need to be dropped. Elgar in for knocking up some huge scores against Australia A.

  • Kendal on August 14, 2013, 7:45 GMT

    @Gurudumu..disappointing to hear you use the word 'quota' in relation to Parnell. That is just not true. The guy was the top player in the team at age group level and was put into international cricket too early in my opinion, although he started well. Since then he has had to go through the usual growing pains: discipline problems, injuries, confidence etc. But there were definate signs that he was back to approaching his best in Sr Lanka. He has every bit of the skill that Morris or Abbott has, he just needs to deliver, and he looked like he was starting to do that. I'm not much into prophecy when it comes to cricket, but I'm pretty sure that Parnell is going to be one of our star players in the future, especially in shorter formats. As a Test bowler we will just have to see.

  • sanjai on August 14, 2013, 6:42 GMT

    you guyz all dont hav ny idea abt parnell coz you all watched him during his injuries worriedhim a lot, n also due to th injuries he cant bowl t his best.... but guyz watched him during his debut series, chmpions trophy, nd in u19 wrldcup will certnly know abt his potential...

  • Dummy4 on August 14, 2013, 6:40 GMT

    I doubt that JP is on trial - Elgar has hardly made the most of the opportunities afforded him by Duminy's injury. I'd say JP has been included simply to give him match practice ahead of the Tests, seeing as he hasn't played any first class cricket since his injuring himself in Australia. And also to probably counter the fact that the India 'A' side will likely feature about 7 first team regulars, going by the teams they selected for the recent one day triangular, lol.

  • Garreth on August 14, 2013, 6:29 GMT

    I think Duminy is in the A squad only for further match fitness and readiness. Don't think it has anything to do with his place in the test side. He is a shoe in and this is just to ensure he is ready for the longer format. Elgar will likely drop out but Faf's place could be on the line going forward given Elgar's form and Faf's lack there of.

  • Mahdy on August 14, 2013, 5:47 GMT

    Duminy will play in SA Test team while Parnell doesn't have the ability or skills that could rival Morris or Abbott. Not sure why Kleinveldt keeps getting a guernsey either. Let Parnell play T20s, I have seen him flayed by opposition batsmen all over the park in ODIs. SA needs to pick the best team irrespective of quotas - if indeed that is what is being considered here in the selection process. SA have to decide what where they want to be in the ICC rankings in all forms of the game.

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