Hashim Amla and Dale Steyn have been awarded national contracts for the first time, as Cricket South Africa announced its squad of 15 players to carry them into the 2007-08 season.
The squad was announced by Gerald Majola, CSA's chief executive, who said in a statement that Amla and Steyn, both 24, had proved that they had made the step up from first-class to international cricket.
"They have fitted very well into the Proteas' set-up, and as young players they are very much part of our plans for the future," said Majola. Amla played key roles in South Africa's victories over India at Cape Town and, especially, over Pakistan at Centurion, where he made 71 and 64 not out in a seven-wicket win. Steyn, meanwhile, grabbed 10 wickets in two Test victories, both at Newlands.
"The other 13 players have had their contracts renewed following outstanding performances in both Test and ODI cricket during the past season," added Majola. "Under Graeme Smith's leadership, they have improved the Proteas' Test rankings and have jumped to the No. 1 spot in the ODI world ratings.
"They have played brave cricket, and have shown commitment to both the team and work ethic. We have the fullest confidence in these 15 contracted players forming the basis of a highly successful 2007-08 season."
Jacques Rudolph's contract was not renewed as he has signed as a Kolpak player for the English county, Yorkshire.
Contracted players 2007-08 Hashim Amla, Mark Boucher, AB de Villiers, Boeta Dippenaar, Herschelle Gibbs, Andrew Hall, Jacques Kallis, Justin Kemp, Charl Langeveldt, Andre Nel, Makhaya Ntini, Shaun Pollock, Ashwell Prince, Graeme Smith, Dale Steyn.