In-form Neil McKenzie rewarded with call-up to national team

2007-11-16 00:00

McKenzie, who clobbered 157 not out in the Lions first innings total of 380 for three at Sedgars Park in Potchefstroom yesterday, has been called to the national squad in Pretoria where he is on stand-by to replace the injured AB de Villiers.

McKenzie will play in the Test against the Black Caps if AB de Villiers, who has a back injury, fails a fitness test early this morning.

If De Villiers is declared fit, McKenzie will have to rush back to Potchefstroom to resume his innings against the Dolphins.

Former Test umpire and match referee Cyril Mitchley said that the playing conditions state that if McKenzie returns, and he is not in Potch at the start of play at 10 am, he can continue his innings after the next wicket falls.

The national call-up is just reward for the veteran Lions batsman, who took a century off the New Zeaalnd attack in the recent SA A game in Potch but has been consistently overlooked by the national selectors in all forms of the game.

Meanwhile, Ahmed Amla, the Dolphins captain, will be regretting his decison to send the Lions in to bat after winning the toss. McKenzie and Werner Coetzee, with his highest first-class score of 131, added 270 for the third wicket after the Lions had made a brisk start to the day.

The Lions batsmen scored at four runs to the over.


Toss - Dolphins

LIONS First Innings

B Snyman c & b Friend 8

A Petersen b Plunkett 64

W Coetsee c Gobind b Plunkett 131

N McKenzie not out 157

Ontong not out 9

Extras : (8nb. 2lb 1w) 11

Total: (for 3 wickets, 96 overs) 380

Fall of wickets: 1/23, 2/91, 361/3

Bowling: Louw 22-6-46-0, Friend 17-0-69-1(5nb), Kent 16-4-49-0,

Plunkett 16-1-84-2 (3nb), Smit 9-1-65-0, Vandiar 7-1-31-0(1w)

Khan 7-0-26-0, Watson 2-0-8-0.

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