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Australia is set to tour South Africa for a 5-match ODI and 3-match T20I series which is scheduled to begin on August 30. Australia announced the squad for South Africa tour on August 7, but it was revised later on August 18 where senior players were rested due to injury.
Smith and Starc ruled out on SA tour
Steven Smith has been sidelined from the ODI series in Australia’s tour of South Africa due to a wrist injury he suffered during the Ashes. Yet he is set to be available for ODIs in India and the World Cup.
Ashton Turner will replace him in the T20Is and Marnus Labuschagne will replace him in the ODIs. Steven Smith suffered a tendon injury, throughout the Ashes and he is currently on recovery by wearing a splint.
He was set to open in the T20Is against South Africa following his return to BBL last season and was one of the few players from the Ashes squad named in that series. He will be ruled out until Australia’s series against India starts on September 22 in India before World Cup.
Mitchell Starc will also be rested until the team is set to clash against India for recovering from the groin soreness he sustained in the Ashes. Spencer Johnson is named in the squad for the T20I series and will remain in the ODI series in South Africa.
Mitchell will be leading the side for the ODI series against South Africa. Pat Cummins is expected to join the squad in the ODI series but is not assured to play due to his fractured wrist.
“The compacted Ashes series and the World Test Championship was a heavy load for the group, and we are taking a conservative approach to the build-up to the World Cup,” chair of selectors George Bailey said.
“With the World Cup the priority of the squad, it was determined on advice that it was best for Steve and Mitchell to join the group in India by which time we expect them to be fully fit and available for the Indian ODI series, plus the World Cup warm-up fixture.”
Australia has selected a squad for T20I leaving Cummins, Starc, Josh Hazlewood, Cameron Green, and David Warner rested due to their workload in Ashes. Ashton Agar is also rested on the series due to calf strain.
Glenn Maxwell will play in the T20I against South Africa but then will be rested on the five ODI series due to the birth of his first child and will be joining the squad in the three-match series against India.
Labuschagne’s call for the ODI series is a significant decision after he was ruled out in the World Cup plan although he wants to be part of the campaign.
Marsh will be leading the T20I squad for the South Africa tour. It is Australia’s first series in T20I after captain Aaron Finch retired after T20 World Cup 2022. Marsh is the interim captain for this series as Australia’s selectors are waiting for appointing the captain.
Turner was known as a potential candidate to succeed Finch as captain for the T20I squad but he was not played for his side since the T20I tour of Bangladesh in 2021.
Despite being a performer in the BBL and regarded as one of the best captains in Australia having Western Australia and scorchers to four titles across the Marsh Cup and BBL for the last two seasons.
He was known as the best middle-order finisher for Australia by Marcus Stoinis, Tim David and Matthew Wade.
Australia T20I squad
Mitchell Marsh (c), Sean Abbott, Jason Behrendorff, Tim David, Nathan Ellis, Aaron Hardie, Travis Head, Josh Inglis, Spencer Johnson, Glenn Maxwell, Matt Short, Marcus Stoinis, Ashton Turner, Adam Zampa
South Africa T20I squad
Aiden Markram (c), Temba Bavuma, Matthew Breetzke, Dewald Brevis, Gerald Coetzee, Donovan Ferreira, Bjorn Fortuin, Reeza Hendricks, Marco Jansen, Sisanda Magala, Keshav Maharaj, Lungi Ngidi, Tabraiz Shamsi, Tristan Stubbs, Lizaad Williams, Rassie van der Dussen