Hit-man Levi coming home

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Richard_Levi1 AP South Africa's Richard Levi hit a 117 off just 51 balls.

Batting sensation Richard Levi will return home from New Zealand this week, as originally planned, Cricket SA said on Tuesday.

Levi, 24, raced to a record century off 45 balls and smashed 13 sixes for his unbeaten 117, guiding South Africa to an eight-wicket win over the Black Caps in only his second international match in Hamilton on Sunday.

Convenor of selectors Andrew Hudson said the opener would not stay on after calls for Levi to be included in the ODI squad.

“Levi's batting performance was fantastic – one of the best I have watched,” Hudson said.

“We hope that he can continue in the same way for the Cape Cobras in the T20 Challenge back home.

“He is an exciting prospect for us and he will be monitored and nurtured accordingly. His time will come.”

Levi would return home with seam bowler Rusty Theron and top-order batsman Colin Ingram, CSA said, after the deciding T20 International in Auckland on Wednesday.

Former captain Graeme Smith, pace bowler Dale Steyn, and all-rounders Jacques Kallis and Faf du Plessis had already linked up with the ODI squad.

“We are delighted with the way the T20I squad has progressed throughout this series and it is exciting to see the momentum that is being built for the remainder of the series,” Hudson said.

“It has been encouraging to see how the youngsters like Richard (Levi) and Marchant (de Lange) have stepped up to the challenges of international cricket, ahead of a very important year for the squad.”

South Africa face New Zealand in the first of three ODIs in Wellington on Saturday.

SA ODI squad: AB de Villiers (captain), Hashim Amla (vice-captain), Johan Botha, JP Duminy, Faf du Plessis, Jacques Kallis, Albie Morkel, Morne Morkel, Justin Ontong, Wayne Parnell, Robin Peterson, Graeme Smith, Dale Steyn, Lonwabo Tsotsobe. – Sapa


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richard levi, wrote

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06:53pm on 21 February 2012
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fukc CSA!

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Frank, wrote

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05:23pm on 21 February 2012
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Another poor decision by CSA! What are they on about "his time will come!?". He is already 24 years old, his time is now! Only in SA will a brilliant player be told to wait his turn while players that are totally out of form continue to be picked. This is a joke, he needs to be in the team now so that he can build experience and be ready for the next world cup. What are these CSA idiots waiting for, maybe for England to entice him over there to join "SA B".

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LourensvZ, wrote

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03:54pm on 21 February 2012
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All you people forgot about the guys who really pull the strings, the bookmakers. I would reckon that they gave the order to have him sent back because he may ruin the plans already made and the results of games and scores already communicated to the different teams. In the process costing them and the team members money.

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Anonymous, wrote

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03:45pm on 21 February 2012
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CSA seems you'll love to be "CHOKERS". Bunch of IDIOTS!!!!

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jw, wrote

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03:00pm on 21 February 2012
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And then they wonder why our cricket sucks. No idea what they doing

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Anonymous, wrote

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02:53pm on 21 February 2012
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Graeme Smith is more powerful than we thought, good performance cannot guarentee you a spot anymore

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Spock101, wrote

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02:35pm on 21 February 2012
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@ Tekton - I am inclined to agree with you... what do they say 'one swallow doesn't make a summer'... it was s great innings, but can he continue in the same vein? I also remember Loets Bosma - he has a brilliant innings, everyone touted him as the greatest thing since sliced bread and yet where is he today? You don't even hear much of him in the domestic circle (unless I'm not listening to the right noises)... lets see if he can grow from here, he has tremendous potential and potential should be nurtured and developed, not fed to the lions. Someone said 'what about the psychological advantage he would have over the NZ team... but would he... maybe they will have worked out how to control him and then he'll get a spate of low scores and then... let him develop his craft and then come back, maybe later in the year and then he can have his opportunity. He will go far, but he must be decently managed.

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Kiwi, wrote

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02:28pm on 21 February 2012
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Being a Kiwi, I think sending him back is the greatest favour you could be doing us. Will however miss the opportunity of seeing more of him.

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Anonymous, wrote

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02:19pm on 21 February 2012
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Excellent decision! The pressure and expectation for this youngster to perform is huge and probably unrealistic after a performance like that. A couple of disappointing innings now could break him. Send him back to his Province to take a breather and build more confidence. At last a management team who know how to manage extraordinary talent. Well done!

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kurt, wrote

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02:07pm on 21 February 2012
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Drop the stupid Selectors. When you find a diamond you keep it...please someone tell those idiots who call themselvs selectors...i mean duh

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Skipper, wrote

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01:48pm on 21 February 2012
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Recon that this is a big mistake! While his second T20 innings was probably a one-off (maybe!) Levi undoubtedly has the talent to do well in ODIs! Recon there is going to be complaints if our openers in the ODIs don't produce.

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Anonymous, wrote

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01:27pm on 21 February 2012
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I say drop faf his to average how ...Levi should replace him.Faf is not doing anything and still in the team

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Tekton, wrote

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12:37pm on 21 February 2012
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Come on everyone, Levi has only played one great game at international level. He needs to wait for his time, he must continue to be consistent before he can be included in the one day game, one great game does not make a player outstanding. How many players have been one hit wonders and have ended up disappointing, loets Bosman anyone? He must prove his worthy before he gets into the one dayers and then test cricket for now, thanks for the great knock, now go get some consistence then you will play in all the forms of the game.

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Patricia, wrote

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12:32pm on 21 February 2012
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Are you kidding me?? "Levi is an exciting prospect, he will be nurtured accordingly, his time will come, he can play for the Cape Cobras for now" Wow, now there's an exciting prospect for an International player of his talent!! By the time the selectors wake up to the fact that Levi is far superior to most of the 'old boys' - SMITH in particular - he will be long gone to play cricket for another country. Selectors world-wide will have been seriously impressed by his performance and are already putting together a lucrative offer! Black Caps looking for a new star? - watch this space!!

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BERNIE, wrote

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12:13pm on 21 February 2012
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i think we need some senceless like Julias to be convener of SA cricket at least he would have said that Levi he can hit , lets put him in , there and there and there and allova the cuurent mamparas are to clever for their own good we will continue to bite our nails have our nerves driven to the edge and many times see our team lose because of them...bloody agaents

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Anonymous, wrote

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11:53am on 21 February 2012
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Just proves what we have suspected for so long. That is that SA Cricket lacks leadership at the very top. Well done Richard. Anyone who has actually played cricket knows you are ready for international one day cricket !

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Clive Dallas, wrote

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11:50am on 21 February 2012
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He is the perfect replacement to Graeme Smith. Drop Graeme and give Richard his place.

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Anonymous, wrote

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11:50am on 21 February 2012
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Only in SA we can play a player who makes big runs in once in 20 innings. Yet an explosive player like Levi is ignored. And you wonder why we don't win big tournaments..... cos it's not the 20th match for the big name player to score runs! Come on get you act together.... Australia dropped Ponting cos he wasn't scoring.... Had Ponting being playing for SA, he would still be in the side.

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Siphiwe Motha, wrote

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11:46am on 21 February 2012
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Silly charades

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JohnO, wrote

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11:15am on 21 February 2012
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Damn shame they didn't give him one outing! He deserves it.

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