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Tristan Stubbs receives maiden Test call-up as Proteas coaches run changes for tough India series

Tristan Stubbs receives maiden Test call-up as Proteas coaches run changes for tough India series
Tristan Stubbs of Dafabet Warriors during day 2 of the CSA 4 Day Domestic Series, Division 1 match against Gbets Rocks at St Georges Park on 12 November, 2023 in Gqeberha, South Africa. (Photo: Richard Huggard/Gallo Images)

As the Proteas’ focus shifts to Test cricket, Cricket South Africa sprung several selection surprises for the multi-format tour against India.

Cricket South Africa have announced much-changed squads for the multi-format series against India which starts on Sunday.

Kagiso Rabada and Temba Bavuma have been rested for the white-ball series with coaches Rob Walter (white ball) and Shukri Conrad’s (red-ball) focus shifting to the Test series which forms part of the World Test Championship.

It’s the Proteas’ first World Test Championship series and according to Conrad, they have selected “a squad that can beat India, not just compete against them”.

Shukri Conrad

Proteas Head Coach Shukri Conrad. (Photo: Rogan Ward/Gallo Images)

Wicketkeeper batter Kyle Verreynne has been recalled to the side for the two-match red ball series after being excluded from the Test series against West Indies earlier this year.

In turn, Heinrich Klaasen has been left out of the Test squad, however, Conrad confirmed that Klaasen’s name will remain in the hat for the subcontinent Test tours next year.

There are also maiden call-ups for Western Province duo David Bedingham and Nandre Burger — the latter has been included in all three squads — in the Test squad.

All-rounder Wiaan Mulder has been recalled to the Test squad.

Big-hitting Warriors batter Tristan Stubbs is the biggest surprise call-up to the Test squad. The burly batter made his One-day international and T20I debut in the last 18 months but receives his first red-ball squad call-up now.

David Bedingham

David Bedingham of South Africa. (Photo: Sydney Seshibedi/Gallo Images)

Read more in Daily Maverick: New Protea Tristan Stubbs is more than just a power hitter 

According to Conrad, Stubbs’ character while playing in a tough SA ‘A’ tour to Sri Lanka in June this year as well as his domestic form this year forced the coach’s hand. The batter also fits into the aggressive style of cricket Conrad is aiming to play.

Ryan Rickelton, who played against West Indies earlier this year, has been omitted from all three Proteas squads.

Fast bowler Anrich Nortje, who suffered a back injury before the Cricket World Cup, is still unavailable for selection. According to Walter, the fast bowler elected to not go for surgery but instead heal “naturally”. He is expected to be available in March.

White-ball squads

There was no space for Bjorn Fortuin in either white ball squad with the Proteas’ premier spinner Keshav Maharaj expected to play in every match of the eight-game series.

Walter confirmed that Matthew Breetzke will open alongside Reeza Hendricks in the three-match T20I series, with Quinton de Kock unavailable for the series, owing to playing in Australia’s Big Bash League.

Fast bowlers Ottniel Baartman and Burger are the only uncapped players in the T20 squad, which has no space for Dewald Brevis.

Gerald Coetzee, Marco Jansen and Lungi Ngidi will miss the 3rd T20I and ODI series and will instead, together with Bavuma and Rabada, play in the round of first-class matches for their respective domestic teams from 14 – 17 December in preparation for the Test series.

All-rounder Mpongwana, meanwhile, has been named in the ODI squad following a successful One-Day Cup campaign where he recorded his maiden List A ton and took 3/32 in the final against North West Dragons in October.

T20I captain Aiden Markram will captain the ODI side in Bavuma’s absence.  DM

Proteas T20I squad against India

Aiden Markram (captain, Titans), Ottniel Baartman (Dolphins), Matthew Breetzke (Warriors), Nandre Burger (Western Province), Gerald Coetzee (Titans, 1st and 2nd T20Is), Donovan Ferreira (Titans), Reeza Hendricks ( Lions), Marco Jansen (Warriors, 1st and 2nd T20Is), Heinrich Klaasen (Titans), Keshav Maharaj ( Dolphins), David Miller ( Dolphins), Lungi Ngidi (Titans, 1st and 2nd T20Is), Andile Phehlukwayo (Dolphins), Tabraiz Shamsi (Titans), Tristan Stubbs (Warriors), and Lizaad Williams (  Titans). 

Proteas ODI squad against India

Aiden Markram (captain, Titans), Ottniel Baartman (Dolphins), Nandre Burger (Western Province), Tony de Zorzi (Western Province), Reeza Hendricks (Lions), Heinrich Klaasen (Titans), Keshav Maharaj (Dolphins), Mihlali Mpongwana (Western Province), David Miller (Dolphins), Wiaan Mulder (Lions), Andile Phehlukwayo (Dolphins), Tabraiz Shamsi (Titans), Rassie van der Dussen (Lions), Kyle Verreynne (Western Province) and Lizaad Williams (Titans). 

Proteas Test squad against India

Temba Bavuma (captain, Lions), David Bedingham (Western Province), Nandre Burger (Western Province), Gerald Coetzee (Titans), Tony de Zorzi (Western Province), Dean Elgar (Titans), Marco Jansen (Warriors), Keshav Maharaj ( Dolphins), Aiden Markram (Titans), Wiaan Mulder (Lions), Lungi Ngidi (Titans), Keegan Petersen (Rocks), Kagiso Rabada (Lions), Tristan Stubbs (Warriors) and Kyle Verreynne (Western Province).

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