South Africa World Cup squad: Hashim Amla in, Chris Morris out

Cricket South Africa (CSA) has announced the 15-man South Africa squad for the 2019 ICC Cricket World Cup in England, and it includes Hashim Amla who has been retained despite a lean period of run-scoring, with the batsman Reeza Hendricks the unlucky omission.

Chris Morris is the other noticeable absentee from South Africa’s World Cup squad, which is captained by Faf du Plessis.

Amla, 36, managed to score only 51 runs in four innings in South Africa’s Test series defeat to Sri Lanka earlier this year and did not play in the first three ODIs against the tourists, although CSA stressed he had not been dropped. Hendricks scored 455 runs from 18 ODIs at an average of 26.76 with one century and two fifties and was seen as the main competitor to Amla, but the selectors have stuck with their fourth-highest run-getter in ODIs.

Despite being out of action owing to injuries, Lungi Ngidi and Anrich Nortje are included in a group of five pace bowlers including Kagiso Rabada, Dale Steyn, Andile Phehlukwayo and Dwaine Pretorious. Imran Tahir and Tabraiz Shamsi will be South Africa’s spin options in England.

Aiden Markram has been named for the first time in a South African World Cup squad on the basis of his red hot List A form this year, which now puts him in pole position to open in England. Markram scored 542 runs in five innings at an average of 108.40 and strike-rate of 132.84 in the Momentum One-Day Cup title last month, and was recalled to South Africa’s ODI squad to play Sri Lanka. He scored 29 and 67 not out in two games.

South Africa World Cup Team 2019

Another batsman for whom this is the first World Cup is Rassie van der Dussen, who will compete with JP Duminy for a spot in the middle order. Duminy will retire after the World Cup.

There is no second wicketkeeper behind Quinton de Kock, with the likely option in the event of any mishap being David Miller.

South Africa’s World Cup squad: Faf du Plessis (capt), Quinton de Kock (wk), David Miller, JP Duminy, Hashim Amla, Aiden Markram, Rassie van der Dussen, Dwaine Pretorius, Andile Phehlukwayo, Kagiso Rabada, Dale Steyn, Lungi Ngidi, Anrich Nortje, Imran Tahir, Tabraiz Shamsi

South Africa’s World Cup fixtures:

May 24: (warm-up) South Africa vs Sri Lanka, Cardiff

May 26: (warm-up) South Africa vs West Indies, Bristol

May 30: South Africa vs England, The Oval

June 5: South Africa vs India, Southampton

June 10: South Africa vs West Indies, Southampton

June 15: South Africa vs Afghanistan, Cardiff

June 19: South Africa vs New Zealand, Birmingham

June 23: South Africa vs Pakistan, Lord’s

June 28: South Africa vs Sri Lanka, Durham

July 6: South Africa vs Australia, Manchester

For a full list of all World Cup fixtures, click HERE