Proteas welcome De Kock back to ODI fold: 'He'll have a point to prove'

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Quinton de Kock. (Photo by Isuru Sameera Peiris/Gallo Images/Getty Images)
Quinton de Kock. (Photo by Isuru Sameera Peiris/Gallo Images/Getty Images)
  • Proteas ODI captain Temba Bavuma admits that his side has missed recent Test retiree Quinton de Kock and is delighted to have him back in the fold.
  • De Kock is fit and raring to go ahead of the three-match ODI series against India.
  • Bavuma says De Kock has a point to prove after his Test retirement last month sent shockwaves in South African cricket.

Proteas captain Temba Bavuma has welcomed the addition of star batter Quinton de Kock ahead of their three-match ODI series against India.

De Kock, who was already due to miss the last two Tests against India following the birth of his daughter, the shockingly announced after the first Test last month that he was retiring from Test cricket.

The Proteas wicketkeeper batsman remains available for limited-overs formats and this series will mark his return to action as a father for the first time.

READ | Five things to expect from mouthwatering SA-India ODI series

Despite the loss of De Kock, the Proteas staged a fighting comeback to seal the Test series, with Kyle Verreynne slotting in as the new keeper.

De Kock makes a welcome return to the Proteas batting line-up after a mixed Test performance and takes his vital position as opening batsman alongside Janneman Malan.

"It's good to see Quinny again, we obviously missed him as the Test team. He has made a decision and it's one that we respect," Bavuma told reporters on Tuesday, ahead of the opening ODI in Paarl on Wednesday. 

"Having Quinny within the team has been good. I don't want to put words in his mouth but knowing him, he'll have a point to prove."

De Kock's last ODI outing came in July where he smashed 120 off 91 balls to help steer the Proteas to draw the ODI series 1-1 against Ireland in Dublin.

In this series, De Kock (5 355) has the opportunity to overtake former Proteas skipper Faf du Plessis as the ninth-highest South African ODI run-scorer, requiring 152 runs to eclipse Du Plessis' 5 507 runs.

The Proteas will be looking to record their first one-day series win since beating Australia in March 2020.

Bavuma hopes that the Proteas can use their 2-1 Test series win as momentum against India, who defeated South Africa 5-1 at home in 2018.

"It's a different format and different skillset and different type of pressure. But I think from a momentum and confidence point of view that's well within the team," said Bavuma.

"We'd be leaning on that to help inspire the other new guys and get us through the challenges we'd be facing over the next three games."

The first ODI is scheduled to start on Wednesday at 10:30 in Paarl.

Proteas ODI squad vs India

Temba Bavuma (captain, Lions), Keshav Maharaj (vice-captain, Dolphins), Quinton de Kock (wicketkeeper, Titans), Zubayr Hamza (Western Province), Marco Jansen (Warriors), Janneman Malan (Paarl Rocks), Sisanda Magala (Lions), Aiden Markram (Titans), David Miller (Dolphins), Lungi Ngidi (Titans), Wayne Parnell (Western Province), Andile Phehlukwayo (Dolphins), Dwaine Pretorius (North West Dragons), Kagiso Rabada (Lions), Tabraiz Shamsi (Titans), Rassie van der Dussen (Lions), Kyle Verreynne (Western Province).

ODI series vs India schedule

Wednesday, 19 January - 1st ODI (Boland Park, Paarl)

Friday, 21 January - 2nd ODI (Boland Park, Paarl)

Sunday, 23 January - 3rd ODI (Newlands, Cape Town)

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