Three new players will represent Cricket South Africa (Women) for the upcoming limited overs tour of the Windies starting 10th September. The three uncapped players Tumi Sekhukhune, Robin Searle and Saarah Smith are graduates from the Powerade National Academy. It will be their first international tour. South Africa will feature against the home side in a three match ODI series followed by a 5 match T20 International series. The matches will be played at Barbados and Trinidad in the Carribean.
The trio had performed exceptionally well during the recently concluded North vs South third annual competition where top 26 most highly promising cricketers from South Africa had gathered for a three day T20 competition.
South Africa are coming back from a loss against England in the recently conducted ODI series. They were also knocked out of the T20 tri series in England which also featured New Zealand as the third team. This upcoming series will help the Proteas to accustom themselves to the conditions in the Windies who are also the hosts for the upcoming ICC World T20 to be held in November. This series will act as a build up for the tournament and will help the coach and team management to choose the right team for the main event.
The CSA management after analyzing the players’ performances in the recently concluded series in Bangladesh and England pointed out few areas of concern. The three selected newbies will try and fill in those gaps and will bring a different dimension to the team.
The North vs South tournament has proved to be a scouting ground to search for the required skill set which will help in enhancing the CSA team further. 21 year old right handed batswoman, Robin Searle has had an extra-ordinary outing and has scored some great knocks. She will surely be challenging for a place in the final eleven and the management is excited about her potential and prospects. She represents Gauteng Women at First Class level and has been a part of South Africa Under-19 Women’s team. She looks up to AB DeVilliers and wishes if she could play as good as him one day. She has been Gauteng Women’s Batsman of the Year and Under-19 Player of the Year as well.
Another 19 year old batting all-rounder, Saarah Smith has showcased her talent in the academy and will be a player to watch out in the future. She plays for North West Women and was a part of SA emerging Women squad. The third new face will be of Tumi Sekhukhune who has now been a part of two successful seasons at the academy and has portrayed great skill and maturity. She is a fast bowler who has worked closely with Shabnim Ismail and feels that her experience at the camp has brought a new dimension to the game feels happy to be one step closer of achieving her dream of representing Proteas at the international level.
With the T20 World Cup just few months away, every nation is now focusing on building their sides for the big event. A series in the Windies against the current reigning T20 Women’s Champions will act as a good testing ground for the Proteas to test out their team combination and the bench strength as well.
The upcoming ODI series will also be important from 2021 ICC World Cup qualifications point of view as there are some crucial points up for grabs for both the sides. The series is a part of ICC Women’s Championship (IWC) and winning the series will aid in direct qualification to the 2021 World Cup to be held in NewZealand.
This series will also have the veteran keeper batsman Trisha Chetty makes a comeback in the side. Chetty has 105 ODI caps to her name and has scored nearly 2500 runs at an average of 30.37. She also has scored more than 1000 runs in T20Is and has a decent strike rate of 88.60. Ayabonga Khaka will however miss the tour as she has undergone a surgery on her shoulder and is currently recovering.
Proteas squad to West Indies:
Dané van Niekerk (captain, Eastern Province), Chloe Tryon (vice-captain, KwaZulu-Natal Coastal), Laura Wolvaardt (Western Province), Lizelle Lee (North West), Suné Luus (Northerns), Mignon du Preez (Northerns), Marizanne Kapp (Eastern Province), Shabnim Ismail (Gauteng), Raisibe Ntozakhe (Gauteng), Masabata Klaas (North West), Zintle Mali (Border), Trisha Chetty (Gauteng), Robyn Searle (Gauteng), Tumi Sekhukhune (Easterns), Saarah Smith (Western Province)
Hilton Moreeng (Head Coach), Salieg Nackerdien (Assistant Coach), Sedibu Mohlaba (Manager), Abram Ramoadi (Performance Analyst), Russell Clarke (Strength & Conditioning Coach), Molebatsi Theletsane (Physiotherapist), Sipokazi Sokanyile (Media Liaison)
Sunday, September 16: 1st ODI – Kensington Oval
Wednesday, September 19: 2nd ODI – Kensington Oval
Saturday, September 22: 3rd ODI – Kensington Oval
Monday, September 24: 1st T20I – Kensington Oval
Friday, September 28: 2nd T20I – Brian Lara Cricket Academy
Sunday, September 30: 3rd T20I – Brian Lara Cricket Academy
Wednesday, October 3: 4th T20I – Brian Lara Cricket Academy
Saturday, October 6: 5th T20I – Brian Lara Cricket Academy