Maharaj named in ICC Champions Trophy squad

Keshav Maharaj has been selected for the Proteas ODI squad for the first time.

Keshav Maharaj has been selected for the Proteas ODI squad for the first time.

Left-arm spinner, Keshav Maharaj, has earned his maiden One-Day International (ODI) call-up to the 15-man Standard Bank Proteas squad for the ICC Champions Trophy, which was announced on Wednesday.

The squad will play three ODI’s against England starting with the first match at Headingley in Leeds on May 24th , before their first group match of the ICC Champions Trophy against Sri Lanka at the Oval on June 3.

The 26-year-old Maharaj has had an impressive debut season for the Test squad, and comes into the squad to bolster the spin options alongside Imran Tahir.

Morne Morkel makes a return to the limited-overs format after nearly 10 months, adding experience to the pace bowling group featuring Kagiso Rabada, Wayne Parnell, Chris Morris, Dwaine Pretorius and Andile Phehlukwayo.

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

“We have been working with this group of players for the last two seasons where our key emphasis has been consitency in selection,” Zondi commented. “That has shown in how this group has performed over the last while, which has resulted in winning three consecutive ODI series.

“We feel we have a squad that covers every scenario that we could possibly be faced with on the tour. Most importantly, every player knows and understands their role and value within the squad.

“Keshav has had an expectional debut season for the Test side and his inclusion in the squad gives us a spinner with a different skills and extra batting depth. We have seen how important it is to bat deep in ODI cricket, this option will give us that cover if needed.”

The squad will depart for England on May 16 and will begin their preprations with two 50-over tour matches against Sussex and Northants.

Standard Bank Proteas ODI squad for three-match ODI series against England and ICC Champions Trophy: Hashim Amla (BuildNat Cape Cobras), Quiton de Kock - wk (Multiply Titans), Faf du Plessis (Multiply Titans), AB de Villiers – captain (Multiply Titans), JP Duminy (BuildNat Cape Cobras), David Miller (VKB Knights), Chris Morris (Multiply Titans), Wayne Parnell (BuildNat Cape Cobras), Andile Phehlukwayo (Hollywoodbets Dolphins), Kagiso Rabada (bizhub Highveld Lions), Imran Tahir (Hollywoodbets Dolphins), Dwaine Pretorius (bizhub Highveld Lions), Keshav Maharaj (Hollywoodbets Dolphins), Farhaan Behardien (Multiply Titans), Morne Morkel (Multiply Titans).

South Africa ODI Tour to UK itinerary

Fri 19 May 1-day Tour match v Sussex (D/N) 1st Central County Ground, Hove
Sun 21 May 1-day Tour match v Northants Northampton
Wed 24 May 1st Royal London ODI (D/N) Headingley, Leeds
Sat 27 May 2nd Royal London ODI Ageas Bowl, Southampton
Mon 29 May 3rd Royal London ODI Lord’s, London

Thu 1 – Mon 19 June ICC Champions Trophy
Sat 3 June Sri Lanka v South Africa The Oval, London
Wed 7 June Pakistan v South Africa Edgbaston, Birmingham
Sun 11 June India v South Africa The Oval, London