South Africa will go into the two-match Test series against Sri Lanka starting December 26 with a 17-member contingent. Cricket South Africa, on Tuesday, withdrew fast bowler Beuran Hendricks and batsman Keegan Peterson – both of whom tested positive for COVID-19 last week – from the series.
The development came to light after the duo returned positive in the first round of tests conducted last week. Meanwhile, the rest of the players gathered in a bio-secure environment at a country club near Pretoria on Saturday (December 19).
Awaiting further rounds of COVID-19 test results, the remaining 17 players started training in small groups. They will now begin the full-fledged preparatory camp on Wednesday (December 23) after returning negative a third time. South Africa will play hosts to Sri Lanka in two Tests in Centurion (Dec 26-30) and Johannesburg (Jan 3-7).
Beuran Hendricks picked up a five-for on Test debut against England at The Wanderers in January this year. The left-arm speedster was primed to form a three-pronged pace attack with Anrich Nortje and Lungi Ngidi.
Glenton Stuurman, who is similar to the now-retired Vernon Philander, could now make his debut in Hendricks’ absence. Peterson, however, was never a first-choice pick and would have made the paying XI only if any of the top-order batsmen were injured.
Full squad lists and schedule of South Africa vs Sri Lanka
South Africa squad: Quinton de Kock (c), Temba Bavuma, Faf du Plessis, Dean Elgar, Sarel Erwee, Keshav Maharaj, Aiden Markram, Wiaan Mulder, Lungi Ngidi, Anrich Nortje, Dwaine Pretorius, Migael Pretorius, Lutho Sipamla, Gelnton Stuurman, Rassie van der Dussen, Raynard van Tonder, Kyle Verreynne
Sri Lanka squad: Dimuth Karunaratne (c), Kusal Mendis, Oshada Fernando, Lahiru Thirimanne, Dhananjaya de Silva, Dasun Shanaka, Dilruwan Perera, Kusal Perera, Dinesh Chandimal, Niroshan Dickwella, Minod Bhanuka, Lasith Embuldeniya, Wanindu Hasaranga, Suranga Lakmal, Lahiru Kumara, Vishwa Fernando, Kasun Rajitha, Dushmantha Chameera, Asitha Fernando, Dilshan Madushanka
1st Test: December 26 to 30 – SuperSport Park, Centurion – 1:30 PM IST
2nd Test: January 3 to 7 – The Wanderers Stadium, Johannesburg – 1:30 PM IST
Published 23 Dec 2020, 13:12 IST