Dane van Niekerk ruled out of 2022 Women's World Cup with ankle injury
CSA has not yet named a replacement captain ahead of their training camp and the West Indies ODIs
An ankle fracture has made South Africa captain Dane van Niekerk unavailable for at least three months, ruling her out of the upcoming West Indies ODIs at home and the 2022 Women's World Cup in New Zealand in March-April. van Niekerk sustained a left ankle fracture in the last week at home in Gqberha and will also miss a training camp as the team steps up preparations for the forthcoming assignments.
"The injury is a result of an accidental slip on a wet surface at home," team doctor Tshegofatso Gaetsewe said. "As things stand, she doesn't require surgery but will be monitored closely. It's a stable fracture with minimal displacement and her recovery timeline is no less than 12 weeks."
van Niekerk previously missed series against Pakistan in March last year with a lower-back injury but returned for the Hundred, where she captained Oval Invincibles to the title. Later, she led South Africa on their tour to the West Indies and participated in the WBBL in Australia.
CSA has not named a replacement captain ahead of their training camp, which starts on Friday, but Sune Luus has previously done the job in van Niekerk's absence. CSA did name a group of 21 players for the camp, including senior players Shabnim Ismail, Marizanne Kapp, Ayabonga Khaka and Lizelle Lee among others. CSA also picked uncapped Western Province batter Delmari Tucker and gave another chance to Raisibe Ntozakhe.
"This is a great opportunity for the coaches to work with this strong group of players and strategically set out the plan for the upcoming series and then moving into the World Cup," convenor of selectors Clinton du Preez said. "Losing Dane is massive for the team and the country, we will sorely miss her leadership and all-round cricket abilities. I would like to wish her all the best with her recovery and a smooth and seamless return to the national team.
"This brings about an opportunity for another player within the pipeline."
After the ten-day camp, South Africa will play a warm-up against the visiting West Indies side on January 25 before the ODIs on January 28 and 31, and February 3 and 6, in Johannesburg.
Training squad: Anneke Bosch, Tazmin Brits, Trisha Chetty, Nadine de Klerk, Mignon du Preez, Lara Goodall, Shabnim Ismail, Sinalo Jafta, Marizanne Kapp, Ayabonga Khaka, Masabata Klaas, Lizelle Lee, Sune Luus, Nonkululeko Mlaba, Raisibe Ntozakhe, Tumi Sekhukhune Nondumiso Shangase, Andrie Steyn, Chloe Tryon, Delmari Tucker, Laura Wolvaardt