South Africa announce a new-look squad for the first two Tests against England

South Africa announce a new-look squad for the first two Tests against England

Ahead of the much-awaited Test series, Proteas have already suffered a major blow after losing their premier pacer Lungi Ngidi.

Faf du Plessis
Faf du Plessis of South Africa. (Photo by Sydney Seshibedi/Gallo Images/Getty Images)

South Africa are set to lock horns with England in four-match Test series starting from 26 December. After a dismal performance on the Indian soil, the Proteas will be eager to prove their mettle at home. Ahead of the Test series, South Africa has included six uncapped players Dane Paterson, Pieter Malan, Rassie van der Dussen, Beuran Hendricks, Dwaine Pretorius and Rudi Second for the first two Tests.

Faf du Plessis and Co will be eager to change their fortunes as they are currently sitting at the bottom of the World Test Championship table. All eyes will be on Pieter Malan, who has delivered match-winning performances in the domestic circuit. Malan has smashed two tons in his last three matches for Western Province.

The right-hander has played 148 First-class matches and has gathered over 10,000 runs at an impressive average of 45.16. The 30-year-old also has 32 tons and 42 half-centuries under his belt.

Van der Dussen also has proved his mettle across several domestic leagues across the globe. He has donned the South African jersey in 18 ODIs where he has scored 664 runs at an impressive average of 73.77. Yet to hit an international ton in ODIs and T20Is, the top-order batsman is expected to wonders with the red ball as well.

Dane Paterson also has ample First-class experience under his belt. The right-arm pacer has played 100 FC matches and has 347 scalps to his name. His inclusion in the squad may prove vital in the absence of Lungi Ngidi.

Lungi Ngidi is set to miss the series due to injury

Ahead of the much-awaited Test series, Proteas have already suffered a major blow after losing their premier pacer Lungi Ngidi. The speedster suffered a ‘significant Grade 1 hamstring muscle tear’ while warming up with his side Tshwane Spartans before the MSL playoff against Nelson Mandela Bay Giants.

The Proteas batting force will be steered by Faf du Plessis alongside Temba Bavuma, Quinton de Kock and Dean Elgar. Kagiso Rabada will lead their bowling line-up alongside Dane Paterson and Keshav Maharaj. The two sides will clash at the SuperSport Park in the inaugural Test of the series on 26 December.

Full squad: Faf du Plessis, Temba Bavuma, Q de Kock, Dean Elgar, Beuran Hendricks, Keshav Maharaj, Pieter Malan, Aiden Markram, Zubayr Hamza, Anrich Nortje, Dane Paterson, A Phehlukwayo, Vernon Philander, Dwaine Pretorius, Kagiso Rabada, Rudi Second, Rassie van der Dussen

Watch: Quinton de Kock’s cunning run out in MSL 2019