PRETORIA – The next generation of young South African cricketers have reconvened at the Powerade Centre of Excellence in Pretoria as 27 hopefuls hope to make the South Africa under-19 squad that will tour England in July 2018.
The Under-19 programme has proved to be pivotal in the Cricket SA (CSA) development pipeline, with Kagiso Rabada, Lungi Ngidi, Aiden Markram, Andile Phehlukwayo and more recently, Wiaan Mulder coming through the ranks, before going on to make their debuts for South Africa.
“It’s quite an exciting group that has been put together. We obviously have guys who have just come back from the World Cup, earlier this year. The series against England is very important and we basically have three generations of Under-19s in one camp, so it will be interesting to see how they go through it,” said SA Under-19 coach, Lawrence Mahatlane.
After rigorous fitness tests conducted on Thursday, the squad will put their skills on display when they play in two inter-squad matches, beginning with a timed-match at the Groenkloof Oval on Friday and Saturday, before wrapping up the camp on Sunday with a 50-over game at Sinoville Cricket Club.
“Fortunately, our monitoring processes are always good, so we generally know where different guys are and this weekend, as we’re playing a two-day game and a one-day game. It’s an opportunity for some young men to see where they are.
“At this time of the season, we know from a South African point of view, we’re in our off-season, so it is important that we spend the next month trying to make sure that we fast-track them without any injuries. So, it’s crucial that from a Cricket South Africa and the Under-19 team’s point of view, we get the balance right.” Mahatlane added.
Details of the England tour will be released in due course.
The South Africa under-19 squad is:
Bryce Parsons (Gauteng), Matthew Montgomery (KwaZulu-Natal Dolphins), Thando Ntini (Western Province), Curtis Campher (Gauteng), Jade de Klerk (Eastern Province), Kenan Smith (Eastern Province), Kgaudise Molefe (Gauteng), Sinethemba Qeshile (Border), Jacob Miltz (Gauteng), Louis van Schalkwyk (North West), Joshua Richards (Gauteng), Mondli Khumalo (KwaZulu-Natal Inland), Sean Gilson (KwaZulu-Natal Inland), Gideon Peters (Northerns), Lifa Ntanzi (KwaZulu-Natal Dolphins), Wandile Makwetu (Gauteng), Jonathan Bird (Western Province), Pheko Moletsane (Free State), Andile Mogakane (KwaZulu-Natal Dolphins), Jean du Plessis (South Western Districts), Ruan Cronje (Free State), Thamsanqa Khumalo (KwaZulu-Natal Dolphins), Michael Mahlaba (Gauteng), Archille Cloete (Boland), Duane Jansen (North West), Marco Jansen (North West), Jarred Goncalves-Jardine (Gauteng).
African News Agency (ANA)