In preparation for the Test series against Australia that starts on February 12, Graeme Smith will not feature for Cape Cobras for the remainder of the Ram Slam T20 Challenge. Cobras will also rest JP Duminy for tonight's match against Dolphins in Paarl.
"JP will have a break on Friday, and Graeme has been pulled out of the tournament altogether because his ankle flared up," Cobras coach Paul Adams told sport24. "It's a precaution, and he'll also be preparing for the Test series (against Australia in February)."
Cobras will continue to rotate the Test players in their squad, with Duminy slated to return for their final two matches of the tournament. Hashim Amla will play against Dolphins, but will take no further part in the tournament.
"We'll also have a look at Vernon Philander and see if his fitness is alright," Adams said. "He woke up with a back spasm on Wednesday so we'll see if he's alright to go on Friday."
The changes will allow Cobras to welcome back Justin Kemp, who had played three matches before taking a break for the birth of his child. Cobras sit atop the Ram Slam table, 10 points ahead of second-placed Dolphins, who have played five matches to Cobras' seven.