Image courtesy of: Zimbio
South Africa opener Dean Elgar could play his first ODI in nearly three years after he was called up to replace fellow opening batsman Hashim Amla for the three-match series against Zimbabwe.
Amla has been ruled out of the series due to a finger injury he sustained during the recently concluded Caribbean Premier League (CPL), where he represented the Barbados Tridents.
However, Amla is not the only high-profile player that will be sidelined for the three-match ODI series as captain Faf du Plessis will also be absent since he has not sufficiently recovered from a shoulder injury.
As a result of this, JP Duminy will captain South Africa in the ODI series against Zimbabwe.
But, South Africa’s team management are optimistic that Du Plessis will be fit to lead the Proteas in the Twenty20 leg of the series, which gets underway on October 9 in East London.
“Hashim sustained a tear to the tendon in his left fifth digit while fielding during the recently-concluded Caribbean Premier League,” South Africa team manager Mohammed Moosajee was quoted as saying by Cricbuzz. “The injury will need up to three weeks to heal making him unavailable for the series against Zimbabwe.
“The CSA medical committee has also withdrawn Faf from the ODI series. He has not made a satisfactory recovery from his shoulder injury and has been given more time to make a complete recovery. We are hopeful he will be fit enough to return to lead the T20 side for the three-match series against Zimbabwe.”
Elgar last played ODI cricket against India in Mumbai in October 2015. In the six ODIs he has played thus far, the 31-year-old has accumulated 98 runs at an average of 24.50. However, he has yet to score a half-century in the 50-over format as his best score to date is 42.
“We have said that the Zimbabwe series is an opportunity to further explore our ODI options and the unfortunate injury to Hashim gives us an opportunity to see what Dean is capable of in the limited-overs format,” South Africa’s convener of selectors Linda Zondi said. “He has always been on our radar having put in consistent performances both in South Africa and the UK, and brings a wealth of valuable experience to the batting group in Hashim and Faf’s absence.”
Meanwhile, spinner Keshav Maharaj has been released from the squad in order to play for Dolphins in the first round of the Sunfoil Series against the Titans. The Sunfoil Series is South Africa’s domestic first-class competition.
The three-match ODI series between South Africa and Zimbabwe starts on September 30 in Kimberley.
South Africa’s ODI Squad: Dean Elgar, JP Duminy (c), Reeza Hendricks, Imran Tahir, Christiaan Jonker, Heinrich Klaasen, Aiden Markram, Willem Mulder, Lungi Ngidi, Andile Phehlukwayo, Kagiso Rabada, Tabraiz Shamsi, Dale Steyn, Khaya Zondo