Wiaan Mulder, the 20-year-old all-rounder, has been added to the South Africa Test squad for the upcoming two-Test series against Sri Lanka. Mulder, uncapped at the Test level, is the only addition to the Test team that clinched a 3-0 win against Pakistan recently.
Mulder, who had earned his Test call-up during the series against Australia last year, has played eight ODIs for South Africa since his international debut against Bangladesh in October 2017. Mulder, however, was forced to miss a majority of the series against Zimbabwe in September-October 2018 due to an ankle injury and was out of international action until the fifth ODI against Pakistan in January this year.
South Africa Test squad: Faf du Plessis (c), Hashim Amla, Temba Bavuma, Theunis de Bruyn, Quinton de Kock (wk), Dean Elgar, Zubayr Hamza, Keshav Maharaj, Aiden Markram, Wiaan Mulder, Duanne Olivier, Vernon Philander, Kagiso Rabada, Dale Steyn
“Wiaan has been part of our strategic thinking in developing a batting all-rounder for the Test squad for some time,” CSA National Selection Panel convener Linda Zondi said on Thursday (February 7). “His injury in the white ball series against Zimbabwe last year came at an unfortunate time and we are gradually working him back into the Proteas set-up.”
Mulder played three first-class matches in January for the Lions, scoring 146 and picking up two wickets against the Knights in his last game, while he also bagged eight wickets from his earlier games against Titans and Dolphins combined.
Meanwhile, Lungi Ngidi, who is recovering from a knee injury, continues to be on the sidelines with the selectors keen on not rushing him back into action.”We never want to rush players back from injury because that can be counter-productive, but he has now had a couple of good weeks of action in the 4-Day Domestic Series,” Zondi said of Mulder’s fitness while adding that they will take time with Ngidi. “For the same reason we are not going to rush Lungi Ngidi back into international action until he has had the time to gain full match fitness.”
The Test series against Sri Lanka gets underway at Kingsmead, Durban from February 13. The second Test will be played from February 21 at St. George’s Park in Port Elizabeth followed by five ODIs and three T20Is.