AB de Villiers will lead the Proteas quest for the Champions Trophy title. Photo: www.photosport.nz

JOHANNESBURG – Keshav Maharaj was the major surprise in South Africa’s squad for the ICC Champions Trophy, which was announced at the Wanderers on Wednesday.

Maharaj, who’s played seven Tests, was called up ahead of Tabraiz Shamsi and Aaron Phangiso into the 15-man squad for the tournament that starts for the Proteas on June 3 at The Oval in London, where they will face Sri Lanka.

“Keshav has had an exceptional debut season for the Test side, and his inclusion in the squad gives us a spinner with a different skills and extra batting depth,” said selection convener Linda Zondi.

“We have seen how important it is to bat deep in ODI cricket, this option will give us that cover if needed.”

Zondi’s panel picked four seam-bowling all-rounders – Chris Morris, Wayne Parnell, Andile Phehlukwayo and Dwaine Pretorius – while Morné Morkel will provide an extra fast-bowling option.

“We have been working with this group of players for the last two seasons, where a key emphasis has been on consistency of selection,” said Zondi.

“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.”

Proteas Squad

Hashim Amla, Quinton de Kock, Faf du Plessis, AB de Villiers (captain), JP Duminy, David Miller, Chris Morris, Wayne Parnell, Andile Phehlukwayo, Kagiso Rabada, Imran Tahir, Keshav Maharaj, Dwaine Pretorius, Farhaan Behardien, Morné Morkel.

Independent Media

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