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Page last updated at 14:10 GMT, Wednesday, 11 February 2009

Prince left out of S Africa squad

Ashwell Prince
Prince has joined Lancashire on a short-term contract

South Africa batsman Ashwell Prince has been left out of the squad for the first two Tests against Australia, despite recovering from a hand injury.

JP Duminy, 24, is retained after impressing as Prince's replacement in the 2-1 series win in Australia.

Fast bowler Lonwabo Tsotsobe, 24, has been added to the 12-man squad.

Selectors are confident wicketkeeper Mark Boucher will recover from a foot injury for the first Test in Johannesburg, starting on 26 February.

Boucher fractured his left big toe after he was struck on the foot by a yorker from Australian fast bowler Shaun Tait in the third one-dayer in Sydney in January.

South Africa's selection convener Mike Procter said: "We are monitoring Mark Boucher's recovery from injury and we are confident that he will be fit to play by the time the series starts."

Prince was the vice-captain before he had to withdraw from the tour of Australia after breaking his thumb during a nets session.

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The 31-year-old left-hander, who has joined Lancashire on a short-term contract, was in fine form in 2008, scoring 900 runs at an average of 64.28.

But Duminy took his chance down under, hitting an unbeaten 50 on his Test debut in Perth in December and followed that with 166 in Melbourne as South Africa took an unassailable 2-0 series lead.

The left-hander also shone in the one-day series against Australia, which South Africa won 4-1 to top the one-day rankings.

Procter said it was a "difficult decision" to leave Prince out of the squad for the first two of three Tests.

"We are in the fortunate position of having seven world-class batsmen competing for six positions. It is a very healthy position for South African cricket," said Procter.

"Ashwell is understandably bitterly disappointed but he appreciates that he has not had the opportunity to play much cricket since his injury."

Eastern Province's Tsotsobe, who made his one-day debut in Perth earlier this month, has yet to make his international bow at Test level.

Procter said: "Tsotsobe performed very impressively from limited opportunities in Australia and he gives us extra bowling variety and depth."

The teams will travel to Durban for the second Test at the Sahara Stadium on 6 March, with the third match taking place in Cape Town on 19-23 March.


South Africa squad: Graeme Smith (capt), Hashim Amla, Mark Boucher, AB de Villiers, JP Duminy, Paul Harris, Jacques Kallis, Neil McKenzie, Morne Morkel, Makhaya Ntini, Dale Steyn, Lonwabo Tsotsobe

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see also
Hughes named in Aussie tour squad
05 Feb 09 |  Australia
Smith ready to take on Australia
06 Feb 09 |  South Africa
Prince signs Lancashire contract
07 Feb 09 |  Lancashire
Australia secure consolation win
07 Jan 09 |  Cricket
Duminy fightback stuns Australia
28 Dec 08 |  Cricket
South Africa pick uncapped trio
22 Dec 08 |  South Africa
Australia in South Africa 2009
09 May 08 |  Cricket


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