AB De Villiers to miss South Africa’s series against Australia

Category : News

South Africa’s one-day and Twenty20 captain AB De Villiers will miss next month’s home series against Australia because of a fractured finger.

De Villiers broke the finger while training with the Royal Challengers Bangalore this week and will have surgery today.

“The hand specialist found that AB (de Villiers) fractured the hand bone (metacarpal) of his middle finger,” said Proteas team manager Dr Mohammed Moosajee.

“He advised that immediate surgery be done to fixate the fracture and to allow the rehabilitation process to begin as soon as possible.”

He will be out of action for about six weeks.

South Africa meet Australia in two T20 internationals and three ODIs in October.

Source: Herald Sun – September 30, 2011

AB throws finest plans into disarray

Category : News

South Africa’s national selectors will be meeting at the Wanderers on Thursday with all their finest plans for the limited-overs series against Australia thrown into disarray by the shock news that new captain AB de Villiers has fractured a finger on his left hand.

So Andrew Hudson, Gary Kirsten, Corrie van Zyl, Vincent Barnes and Shafiek Abrahams not only have to quickly find another new captain for the two T20 internationals and three ODIs against Australia, but also a wicketkeeper.

While Hashim Amla is the designated vice-captain, there is a school of thought that Graeme Smith should return to lead the team in such a tough series against our arch-rivals.

Whether many of the South African public have forgiven Smith for his jaywalking escapade to Ireland after the World Cup disappointment remains to be seen and the imposing left-hander has also had a cursed run of broken fingers and hands and knee injuries, as well as just two half-centuries in 23 innings in the last 18 months.

While all the other batsmen are shaking off the pre-season rust in either the Champions League or SuperSport Series, Smith is not, as he is recovering from a knee operation.

But South Africa’s most successful captain has been assiduous in his preparation for the new season and his absence, plus that of De Villiers, could leave the batting exposed.

Counting against Amla is his total lack of experience of captaincy at international level, as well as his reluctance to lead. National selection convenor Andrew Hudson told SuperSport.com on Wednesday that it is not a simple matter of the vice-captain stepping up.

“We need to talk about the captaincy. It was understood when Hashim agreed to take on the vice-captaincy that he still wants to be a lower-profile member of the team. It depends on what Gary Kirsten wants too … there are a number of factors to consider,” Hudson said.

TEAM BALANCE THROWN OUT

The absence of De Villiers also throws out the balance of the team as his dual role of wicketkeeper allowed the side to play an extra batsman or bowler.

The gloves seem destined to go to one of Mark Boucher, Heino Kuhn or Morne van Wyk.

Kuhn had a fine winter with the South Africa A side, but has never played in an ODI and the selectors might not want to be too quick to discard the more experienced Boucher or Van Wyk for such a crunch series.

While Van Wyk was a gutsy performer at the World Cup, he still scored only 65 runs in five innings, while Boucher will at least be coming fresh from the Champions League.

Wayne Parnell looks in fine shape and should claim the third pace bowler’s place behind Dale Steyn and Morne Morkel, with Lonwabo Tsotsobe possibly also playing if South Africa choose to include just one spinner in home conditions or if Johan Botha bats at seven.

The spin conundrum will be as vexing for the selectors as the De Villiers issue. Who ranks as the incumbent spinner if South Africa do just include one in their starting XI – Imran Tahir, Robin Peterson or Johan Botha?

There are only a couple of left-handers – Mike Hussey and David Warner – queuing up to face the South Africans in the Australian squad announced earlier on Wednesday, so that may count against off-spinner Botha.

With Hudson confirming that the ODI squad will comprise 13 or 14 players, it is bound to end in tears for at least one of the spinners when the squad is eventually announced next week after all CSA’s protocols have been observed.

And that’s not even taking Roelof van der Merwe, who has been in excellent form for Somerset in the Champions League, into account.

Colin Ingram, who had just one opportunity at the World Cup and played a vital innings, should be the extra specialist batsman in the squad, while numbers 13 and 14 will be an extremely tough selection between the likes of Ryan McLaren, Albie Morkel, Botha, Peterson, Rusty Theron, Van der Merwe and Tahir.

Possible squad – Hashim Amla, Graeme Smith, Jacques Kallis, JP Duminy, Faf du Plessis, Colin Ingram, Heino Kuhn/Mark Boucher, Johan Botha/Robin Peterson/Imran Tahir, Wayne Parnell, Dale Steyn, Morne Morkel, Lonwabo Tsotsobe, Botha/Peterson/Tahir or two of Ryan McLaren, Albie Morkel and Rusty Theron.

Source: SuperSport – September 28, 2011 / KEN BORLAND

AB’s injury puts spotlight on gloves

Category : News

Andrew Hudson and his selectors already had a difficult task on their hands picking the limited overs teams for the upcoming series against Australia – now that job has been complicated further following the injury to AB de Villiers.

Initial reports from India on Wednesday were that De Villiers, captain of both of South African limited overs teams, had fractured his left hand while training for the Royal Challengers Bangalore, who are participating in the Champions League T20 tournament in India.

The national team’s manager, Mohammed Moosajee, said the injury would be assessed by a local specialist before any decisions are made, but a fracture of any sort would put in jeopardy De Villiers’s place for the two T20 matches and three one-day internationals against Australia. The first T20 match is at Newlands in a fortnight.

Hashim Amla, who was appointed as De Villiers’ vice-captain, should automatically step up to the top position should De Villiers be unavailable. That is the easy part for Hudson and his fellow selectors who will be meeting at the Wanderers over the weekend to decide on the make-up of the two South Africa squads. The tougher bit lies in identifying who will replace De Villiers behind the stumps.

Mark Boucher and Heino Kuhn were both part of the 28-man squad that participated in new coach Gary Kirsten’s recent training camp at Arabella in the Western Cape.

Boucher hasn’t been part of the limited overs plans for the last 12 months but as a short-term fix the selectors may want to look his way again.

Kuhn would be a long-term solution and Hudson hinted at such a move this week, saying the selectors won’t just want to look at this season, but also towards next year’s T20 World Cup in Sri Lanka and even the next 50-over event in 2015.

Meanwhile, Australia named their squads for the T20s and three ODIs yesterday.

AUSTRALIA LIMITED OVERS SQUAD
Twenty20 – Cameron White (captain), Shane Watson, Doug Bollinger, Patrick Cummins, Aaron Finch, David Hussey, Brett Lee, Mitchell Marsh, Shaun Marsh, Stephen O’Keefe, James Pattinson, Steven Smith, Matthew Wade, David Warner.
ODIs – Michael Clarke (captain), Shane Watson, Doug Bollinger, Patrick Cummins, Xavier Doherty, Brad Haddin, Mike Hussey, Mitchell Johnson, Brett Lee, Shaun Marsh, James Pattinson, Ricky Ponting, Steven Smith, David Warner.

Source: IOL – September 29, 2011 / STUART HESS

AB suffers hand fracture

Category : News

AB de Villiers, captain of the Proteas’ Castle Lager ODI and T20 squads, fractured his right hand while practising with the Royal Challengers Bangalore in India on Wednesday morning.

He has been ruled out of the remainder of the Nokia Champions League T20 tournament and will be flying home immediately for medical treatment and diagnosis.

“AB’s injury will be assessed by Cricket South Africa’s (CSA) team of hand specialists as soon as he returns home,” commented Proteas’ team manager, Dr. Mohammed Moosajee.

“This will give us an exact indication of the treatment and rehabilitation required and the length of time that he will be out of action.

“At this stage we can only make a call about his availability for the series against Australia once the specialists have assessed his injury.”

Source: SuperSport – September 28, 2011

Injured de Villiers out of Champions League

Category : News

AB de Villiers has been ruled out of the remainder of the Champions League Twenty20 after fracturing a finger on his left hand during a Royal Challengers Bangalore training session at the Chinnaswamy Stadium in Bangalore. In his absence, either Tillakaratne Dilshan or Arun Karthik will keep wicket.

The injury could put de Villiers in doubt for part of Australia’s tour of South Africa, which begins with a Twenty20 international on October 13. South Africa’s team manager Mohammad Moosajee told ESPNcricinfo that de Villiers will consult with Cricket South Africa’s hand specialists on his return home. “He will probably be coming back to South Africa tonight,” he said. “He will see our panel of hand specialists after that, and we will decide what the plan of action is.

“I understand from the Bangalore physio that he broke the third finger on his left hand during a fielding drill. It is quite serious, that’s why he is coming back.”

The series will be de Villiers’ first after taking over as South Africa’s limited-overs captain from Graeme Smith in June. South Africa play two Twenty20s against Australia, followed by three one-dayers that begin on October 19.

Royal Challengers had lost their first game of the CLT20 against Warriors on September 23. With three league games in hand, another loss would make a semi-final berth highly unlikely. However, three wins out of three would make qualification almost a certainty – two other sides in Group B would need to be tied on three wins for net run rates to come into contention, and Royal Challengers’ net run rate did not suffer greatly in their last-ball loss to Warriors.

Virat Kohli said Royal Challengers will miss de Villiers’ experience. “Not having AB is a big loss,” he said. “But we have quality players in our squad who can cope with it.”

Royal Challenger play Kolkata Knight Riders in Bangalore on Thursday, with games against Somerset and South Australia scheduled later on.

Source: NDTV – September 28, 2011