With Faf du Plessis sidelined with an injury, JP Duminy has been named captain of South Africa’s Twenty20 International side for the three-match series against India later this month.
Duminy, the experienced left-hand batsman, has led South Africa previously in five T20Is, winning three and losing two. He last led the country during the home series against Bangladesh in October last year.
The Cricket South Africa selectors also decided to rest established players including Hashim Amla, Aiden Markram, Kagiso Rabada and Imran Tahir following a busy summer. AB de Villiers, who missed the first three One-Day Internationals against India through injury before returning for the fourth, figures in the T20I squad.
“With the Test series against Australia starting only five days after the completion of the T20 series, it is necessary for us to rest some of the players who have featured in virtually all our international matches so far this summer,” said Linda Zondi, CSA national selection panel convener.
“These include Hashim Amla and Aiden Markram among the batsmen as well as most of our frontline fast bowlers. AB de Villiers has missed quite a lot of cricket this summer, so he will play in the T20 series.
“We have also decided to give Imran Tahir a break. He remains our first-choice spin bowler in both white-ball formats but we need to give more game time to Tabraiz Shamsi and Aaron Phangiso. The next ICC World Twenty20 is not all that far away in 2020, so it is important that we develop and examine our resources for that tournament.”
Meanwhile, the selectors also picked uncapped Christiaan Jonker, the batsman, Junior Dala, the pacer, and Heinrich Klaasen, the wicketkeeper.
“Christiaan Jonker has been one of the most explosive finishers in domestic T20 cricket in recent seasons and his selection, together with that of Junior Dala, gives players who have performed well at franchise level the opportunity to show that they can compete at the highest level,” said Zondi. “Heinrich Klaasen’s recent performance speaks for itself.
“Reeza Hendricks gets another opportunity for the same reason, having been the highest runs scorer in this season’s RAM SLAM Challenge.”
The three T20Is will be played on February 18, 21 and 24 in Johannesburg, Centurion and Cape Town respectively.
Squad: JP Duminy (capt), Farhaan Behardien, Junior Dala, AB de Villiers, Reeza Hendricks, Christiaan Jonker, Heinrich Klaasen (wk), David Miller, Chris Morris, Dane Paterson, Aaron Phangiso, Andile Phehlukwayo, Tabraiz Shamsi, Jon-Jon Smuts.