Former players Ray Jennings and Fanie de Villiers analyse South Africa’s Test squad for the series against England.
The squad: ‘There are not many changes which is a good sign, because it means the selectors respected what happened in India.
AB de Villiers keeping: ‘It’s not a positive thing for wicketkeeping, but it does buy some other players time. It won’t make the rest of the batsmen more relaxed seeing AB keep. At some stage one batsman will have to be dropped which will create pressure on the guys to perform. We don’t have enough confidence in our wicketkeepers.’
Dropping Dane Vilas: ‘I feel sorry for Vilas. He hasn’t had a proper chance to establish himself because everyone struggled in India and the conditions made it the toughest place to keep wicket in the world. The selectors have painted themselves in a corner by giving Temba Bavuma a chance in the last Test in India. While he has done enough to get a few chances, his performance in the fourth Test has pushed Vilas out as a batsman.’
Quinton de Kock’s omission: ‘Quinny doesn’t deserve to come back yet, mainly because Vilas hasn’t had a fair chance to establish himself.’
The openers: ‘I don’t feel Temba Bavuma is equipped to open the batting against the England attack, because the conditions compared to India will be a lot different. His skill is tied to the middle order. Stiaan van Zyl will have to do well.’
De Villiers on:
AB keeping wicket: ‘If Quinton de Kock doesn’t play AB has to be the wicketkeeper. South Africa need a wicketkeeper who can bat in the top six.’
Quinton de Kock’s omission: ‘I’m surprised he is not in the squad. It’s a big mistake by the selectors. I would rather gamble on him than anyone else.
Dropping Dane Vilas: ‘It’s the right call. He should have never gone to India in the first place. It was clear from the beginning that he wasn’t good enough to be there.’
Bowling attack: ‘I’m a bit worried by one or two players. We have the right guys but I’m not sure about their form. Kagiso Rabada is too young and not yet the complete player, but he has enormous potential.’
The openers: ‘It’s a massive problem. It’s the one area where we are falling short.’