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AB de Villiers and Morne Morkel ruled out of the New Zealand Tests

Morne Morkel and AB de Villiers
South African fast bowler Morne Morkel celebrates with teammate A.B. de Villiers. (Photo by MARK RALSTON/AFP/Getty Images)

South Africa will be without two of their biggest test stars – AB de Villiers and Morne Morkel – in the upcoming Test series against New Zealand. Both of them are injured. Rest of the 15 man squad comprises of the same players who played against England in their most recent Tests series at home. Left-arm fast bowler Wayne Parnell is the only player in the squad who had missed the series.

“It is most unfortunate that we will not be able to call on two players of the quality and experience of De Villiers and Morkel,” commented CSA Selection Convener, Linda Zondi. “However, we are fortunate to have a capable stand-in leader in Faf du Plessis and other exciting options to select from.

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“Injuries are a reality that we have to deal with and with both Dale Steyn and Vernon Philander fit and firing again after their respective long-term injuries, I am confident that we have the players to take on New Zealand and win.

“Another very encouraging sign is the good pre-season form being shown by a number of Test squad members during the two South Africa A four-day series. These include Stephen Cook, Dean Elgar, Stiaan van Zyl, Vernon Philander and Dane Piedt.”

AB de Villiers had complained of pain in the left elbow while Morne seems to be having a swelling disk in his back.

Commenting on the injuries, Proteas team manager, Dr Mohammed Moosajee said, “AB complained of pain in his left elbow while he was participating in the CPL and subsequent MRI scans revealed an impingement of the joint capsule. He has since been released from the CPL and will need extensive rehab and treatment during a recovery period of between six and eight weeks.

“Morne has been suffering from mild back pain of which scans and further investigation by a specialist revealed a bulging disk. He will also require rehab and a recovery period of between four and six weeks. We are hoping to have both players fully fit and available for selection for the start of the Momentum ODI series against Australia in October.”

The 1st Test begins at Durban on Aug 19, 2016

Standard Bank South Africa Test squad: Faf du Plessis (C), Kyle Abbott, Hashim Amla, Temba Bavuma, Stephen Cook , Quinton de Kock, JP Duminy, Dean Elgar, Chris Morris, Wayne Parnell, Vernon Philander, Dane Piedt, Kagiso Rabada, Dale Steyn, Stiaan van Zyl

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