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South Africa picks Maharaj, Morkel for Champions Trophy

21 April 2017

However, Steyn will continue his recovery from shoulder surgery with South Africa A, while another experienced seamer, Vernon Philander, remains absent from the limited-overs set-up.

Keshav Maharaj was the major surprise in South Africa's squad for the ICC Champions Trophy, which was announced at the Wanderers on Wednesday.

Keshav Maharaj is set to make his ODI debut for the Proteas' after being included in the squad for their warm-up tour against England, before the ICC Champions Trophy campaign held in England in the beginning of June.

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Maharaj was the leading wicket-taker in the recently concluded Test series against New Zealand and also helped his side win a Test against the hosts. The fast bowler hasn't played an ODI since June previous year against West Indies.

The 26-year-old spinner topped the wicket tally count with a total 15 wickets against New Zealand, while also accumulating the best bowling average for his side with an average of 19.93. He will provide added experience in a squad that will rely on Kagiso Rabada as the attack spearhead.

Reflecting on the squad, Cricket South Africa (CSA) convener of selectors, Linda Zondi, said that national selectors have picked a strong squad which covers all the combinations and conditions expected for the eighth edition of the eight-team event.

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South African one-day squad: AB de Villiers (capt), Hashim Amla, Farhaan Behardien, Quinton de Kock (wkt), JP Duminy, Faf du Plessis, Imran Tahir, Keshav Maharaj, David Miller, Morne Morkel, Chris Morris, Wayne Parnell, Andile Phehlukwayo, Dwaine Pretorius, Kagiso Rabada.

"We have been working with this group of players for the last two seasons where our key emphasis has been consistency in selection", he said in media statement.

South Africa's ODI team will play three games against England as a warmup for the Champions Trophy, when the Proteas play Sri Lanka, Pakistan and India in Group B. "Should he play‚ it allows us the option of breathing easier than the option of two outright spinners who can't bat". "Most importantly, every player knows and understands their role and value within the squad", Zondi added.

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South Africa picks Maharaj, Morkel for Champions Trophy