Quinton de Kock, who recently led his country to a 2-0 Test series victory over Sri Lanka, will once again take the reins in what is set to be South Africa's first tour of Pakistan since 2007.
The squad includes two uncapped pacers in Daryn Dupavillon and Ottneil Baartman. They replace Glenton Stuurman and Migael Pretorius, both of whom were part of the squad that faced Sri Lanka. Both Stuurman and Pretorius sustained injuries while training and will, therefore, not be traveling to Pakistan.
Apart from their premier Test spinner, Keshav Maharaj, the Proteas have also included two other spin-bowling options in George Linde and Tabraiz Shamsi.
Addressing the selections, South Africa's convener of selectors, Victor Mpitsang, stated that they wanted to strengthen the bowling attack given their unfamiliarity with the conditions that will be on offer in Pakistan. He said:
"Considering that the conditions that will be faced are largely unknown to the South African team, we wanted to strengthen the attack with the skill sets that Tabraiz Shamsi and George Linde have to offer, while giving players like Daryn Dupavillon and Ottniel Baartman an opportunity after making strong cases for themselves in recent seasons."
South Africa's pace battery, which comprises nine bowlers, has been bolstered with the return of Kagiso Rabada. The world's No. 6 ranked bowler missed out on the Sri Lanka series as he was nursing a groin injury.
A separate squad will be announced next week for the three T20Is which will follow the Tests.
The first Test is scheduled to be held in Karachi. Meanwhile, Rawalpindi will play host for the second and last Test.
All three T20Is between South Africa and Pakistan will be contested in Lahore's Gaddafi Stadium.
South Africa Test Squad: Quinton de Kock (capt), Temba Bavuma, Aiden Markram, Faf du Plessis, Dean Elgar, Kagiso Rabada, Dwaine Pretorius, Keshav Maharaj, Lungi Ngidi, Rassie van der Dussen, Anrich Nortje, Wiaan Mulder, Lutho Sipamla, Beuran Hendricks, Kyle Verreynne, Sarel Erwee, Keegan Petersen, Tabraiz Shamsi, George Linde, Daryn Dupavillon, Ottniel BaartmanPublished 09 Jan 2021, 06:13 IST