• Maharaj in ODI squad for Australia series

    Test spinner Keshav Maharaj has been named in the Proteas squad for three ODIs against Australia.

    The uncapped Janneman Malan and Kyle Verreynne, who were in the squad for the preceding ODI series against England but did not play, have been retained.

    All-rounder Dwaine Pretorius and batsmen Rassie van der Dussen and Faf du Plessis have been rested. Batsman Temba Bavuma has been included despite a hamstring injury.

    ‘With the completion of the 2019 Cricket World Cup and the next one being three years away from now, we always saw the series against England and Australia as an opportunity to play some fresh talent,’ said head coach Mark Boucher.

    READ: Who should open batting with De Kock?

    ‘If we feel that we need to rest players, we will, as we have done in the recent past. Faf has been fantastic for us in white-ball cricket and remains very much in our ODI plans and we will manage his workload for the near future diligently.

    ‘I would like to strengthen our depth pool right now and see what players we have out there. I feel that this is the time and opportunity to do so.’

    Left-arm spinner Maharaj has played 30 Tests but just four ODIs since debuting in international cricket in 2016. He has been in fine form for the Dolphins in the ongoing One-Day Cup and recently took successive four-wicket hauls against the Cape Cobras and Knights.

    ‘We are excited to see what will come from the selections we have made ahead of this latest series against Australia. It is again another young squad that sees the absence of some senior players in Faf, Rassie and Dwaine, while we balance the workloads of individuals ahead of an extremely busy year and a bit for the Proteas men,’ added independent selector Linda Zondi.

    ‘At the same time, it is a good opportunity to give younger and less experienced players an opportunity to show us what they’ve got to offer when the spotlight is fully on them. We have every confidence in their capabilities and potential, which is why we have backed them to take on the task of playing this formidable Australian side.

    ‘We are pleased to call up Keshav, who has done really well with the white ball over an extended period of time in the domestic franchise competitions of CSA. His experience, the extra spin option he provides us as well as the added contributions he makes with the bat and with fielding will be welcomed additions to the team.’

    Boland Park in Paarl will host the first ODI on Saturday. The Mangaung Oval in Bloemfontein and Senwes Park in Potchefstroom will host the second and third ODI, respectively, next week.

    Squad: Quinton de Kock (c), Temba Bavuma, David Miller, Kagiso Rabada, Andile Phehlukwayo, Tabraiz Shamsi, Lungi Ngidi, Beuran Hendricks, Heinrich Klaasen, Janneman Malan, Jon-Jon Smuts, Anrich Nortje, Lutho Sipamla, Keshav Maharaj, Kyle Verreynne.

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