South Africa name squad for Under-19 World Cup

File image: South Africa Under-19.File image: South Africa Under-19.

Western Province players Asakhe Tsaka, Kaden Solomons and Ethan Cunningham have been named in South Africa’s squad for next year’s Under-19 World Cup.

The tournament will be played in the Caribbean in January and February 2022.

Former Proteas Neil McKenzie and Rory Kleinveldt will work with the squad as batting and bowling consultant, respectively.

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South Africa Under-19 World Cup squad

  1. George van Heerden (captain)
  2. Liam Alder
  3. Matthew Boast
  4. Dewald Brevis
  5. Michael Copeland
  6. Ethan Cunningham
  7. Valentine Kitime
  8. Kwena Maphaka
  9. Gerhard Maree
  10. Aphiwe Mnyanda
  11. Andile Simelane
  12. Jade Smith
  13. Kaden Solomons
  14. Joshua Stephenson
  15. Asakhe Tsaka

Travelling reserves

  • Hardus Coetzer
  • Ronan Herrmann
  • Caleb Seleka

Team management

  • Head coach: Shukri Conrad
  • Assistant coach: Thabang Khumalo
  • Manager: Blanche Conradie
  • Physiotherapist: Phumzile Ngobese
  • Fitness trainer: Curtley Diesel
  • Video analyst: Kyle Southgate
  • Bowling consultant: Rory Kleinveldt
  • Batting consultant: Neil McKenzie
  • Doctor: Salih Solomons

What SA U-19 convenor of selectors Patrick Moroney said

“The process of putting this group of players together is only the pinnacle of the work that started as far back as three years ago when some of these players were exposed to the CSA Talent Acceleration Programme for the first time,” said Moroney.

“All these players played in the CSA Cubs week hosted in January earlier this year. Covid has played a big part in things being different, especially taking into account the schools cricket programme where schools play each other on a week-to-week basis that could not take place because of Covid.

“But taking all into account I believe that we have managed to select a team that will be competitive at the World Cup in the West Indies. We are blessed in the country with some exceptional talent, and I trust that these young men will use this as a platform to propel themselves into the cricketing world.

“Unfortunately, we can only select 15 players and three travelling reserves to the showpiece, but it was no easy task with an abundance of talent in the country.

“Some less fortunate players did not make these teams but no doubt that we will see them in the future plying their trade in the provincial and even national teams. I wish the team and staff well in their final preparation and wish them all of the very best.”

What SA U-19 head coach Shukri Conrad said

“We have a lot of exciting players in our group, and I am certain they will be well led by George,” added Conrad.

“I want us to have the courage of our convictions. Have the courage to play the way we have practised, to follow the philosophy that we have set out and, hopefully, we can adapt, depending on what conditions are prevalent in the West Indies, both on the tour and the World Cup.

“The World Cup is the priority, but we also have a series to the West Indies that we’d like to win. It is also great preparation for the boys. I would like to see our boys continue the work; we still have a little bit of work to do before we get there and once there, to go out and have the courage to play the way we want to play.

“Ultimately, I believe if we do that enough, then we will be victorious. We are certainly not going there as a side who wants to just compete, or a side just thrilled to be there, we want to not only give a good account of ourselves but also get into the play-off stages and win tournaments. That’s a long way away, but if we follow the building blocks, we will be alright.”

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