Boucher: T20 World Cup spots still up for grabs

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Proteas head coach Mark Boucher
Proteas head coach Mark Boucher
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Proteas coach Mark Boucher admitted that he is still tinkering with his options for next year's T20 World Cup when South Africa take on England next week.

The first of three T20s is scheduled to get underway at Newlands on Friday, 27 November.

This will be the Proteas' first international match in eight months since the coronavirus pandemic halted the cricketing calendar across the globe.

Back-to-back T20 World Cup's are expected in the next two years with India hosting in October 2021 and the rescheduled Australia World Cup now set to be staged in 2022.

READ | Proteas coach Boucher opens up on Black Lives Matter, Covid-19, CSA issues

The Proteas will be looking to redeem themselves at next year's T20 World Cup after finishing in seventh-place at last year's 50-Over tournament in England.

Boucher admitted that prior to the lockdown, he had a 15-man squad in mind but since the coronavirus hiatus, he reckons there's a few spots up for grabs.

"We haven't played cricket in some time. With regards to form and ageing of players, I actually haven't gotten the 15 at the moment," Boucher told reporters on Thursday.

"Let's start with playing and I'll work out certain positions that are solidified and maybe some that are open. Since there's been no white-ball cricket being played in our country, I'd like to give everyone an open shot at trying to put their hands up."

Boucher admitted that there is some clarity in certain positions but that there's a lot of room for new talent to make their mark.

"Generally when you're picking a World Cup squad, 80% sort of selects itself, it's that 20% where there's going to be tough decisions made," said Boucher.

"We'll select players for different conditions, we've got the opportunity now to look at different individuals.

"Some of the guys played a lot of cricket in the IPL and we've got to manage their workload. It's quite an exciting time and it's an opportunity to try some new faces with the process knowing that we need to win."

Proteas squad for England T20 and ODI series:

Quinton de Kock (captain, Titans), Temba Bavuma (Lions), Junior Dala (Titans), Faf du Plessis (Titans), Bjorn Fortuin (Lions), Beuran Hendricks (Lions), Reeza Hendricks (Lions), Heinrich Klaasen (Titans), George Linde (Cape Cobras), Keshav Maharaj (Dolphins), Janneman Malan (Cape Cobras), David Miller (Dolphins), Lungi Ngidi (Titans), Anrich Nortje (Warriors), Andile Phehlukwayo (Dolphins), Dwaine Pretorius (Lions), Kagiso Rabada (Lions), Tabraiz Shamsi (Titans), Lutho Sipamla (Lions), Jon-Jon Smuts (Warriors), Glenton Stuurman (Warriors), Pite van Biljon (Knights), Rassie van der Dussen (Lions), Kyle Verreynne (Cape Cobras). 

England men's tour to South Africa: 

Friday, 27 November at 18:00

1st T20I: South Africa v England, Newlands, Cape Town  

Sunday, 29 November at 14:30

2nd T20I: South Africa v England, Boland Park, Paarl  

Tuesday, 01 December at 18:003

rd T20I: South Africa v England, Newlands, Cape Town   

Friday, 4 December at 13:00

1st ODI: South Africa v England, Newlands, Cape Town  

Sunday, 6 December at 10:00

2nd ODI: South Africa v England, Boland Park, Paarl  

Wednesday, 09 December at 13:00

3rd ODI: South Africa v England, Newlands, Cape Town

- Compiled by Sport24 staff

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