Fast bowler Duanne Olivier has been recalled for South Africa’s home test series against India, a reward for excellent domestic form from a player who shot to prominence four years ago before taking up a Kolpak contract.
The 29-year-old has claimed 48 wickets in 10 tests at an average below 20, but his career in the five-day international game looked as though it was over when he joined Yorkshire in 2019.
Since his return to South Africa, Olivier has taken 28 wickets at an average of 11 in the first-class four-day competition, with his express pace and ability to get steepling bounce off the Highveld wickets – where the first two tests will be played – a major plus for the side.
Concern about potential positive Covid-19 cases have led to the selection of a squad that is larger than usual for the three-match series, which starts on December 26, with Olivier part of a 21-man squad under captain Dean Elgar.
Seamer Glenton Stuurman and right arm off-break bowler Prenelan Subrayen were also recalled, while all-rounder Sisanda Magala and left-handed wicketkeeper-batsman Ryan Rickelton earn a first call-up.
In a statement from Cricket SA on Tuesday convenor of selectors Victor Mpitsang said:
The first test will start on the Day of Goodwill at SuperSport Park in Pretoria, with the second taking place from January 3 to 7 at The Wanderers in Johannesburg and the third at Newlands in Cape Town from January 11 to 15.
Dean Elgar (captain), Temba Bavuma, Quinton de Kock, Kagiso Rabada, Sarel Erwee, Beuran Hendricks, George Linde, Keshav Maharaj, Lungi Ngidi, Aiden Markram, Wiaan Mulder, Anrich Nortje, Keegan Petersen, Rassie van der Dussen, Kyle Verreynne, Marco Jansen, Glenton Stuurman, Prenelan Subrayen, Sisanda Magala, Ryan Rickelton and Duanne Olivier. – Reuters