Johannesburg – Highveld Lions wicketkeeper Thami Tsolekile has been recalled to the Proteas Test squad, after nearly eight years in the wilderness, as a replacement for retired veteran Mark Boucher.

“Thami has done very well both with the Lions and South Africa A for a couple of seasons, culminating in his South African record eight catches in an innings this past week,” Cricket SA (CSA) selection convener Andrew Hudson said in a statement on Wednesday.

“With AB de Villiers also able to fill the role of wicketkeeper in the Test series it gives the tour selectors options in this important position.”

Boucher announced his retirement from international cricket on Tuesday after undergoing surgery, following a freak accident when a bail hit him in the left eye during a tour match in Taunton.

Tsolekile, 31, played the last of his three Tests against England in Port Elizabeth in December 2004.

He boasts 465 dismissals from 132 first-class matches, and holds a batting average of 29.03.

South Africa, who drew the first match of their tour against Somerset on Tuesday, face Kent in their next warm-up match starting on Friday.

The first of three Tests starts at The Oval, in London, on July 19.– Sapa