South Africa’s key test players, AB de Villiers and Dale Steyn will both have a dress rehearsal for an expected return to Test cricket when they play for a South African Invitation XI against Zimbabwe later this month.
The teams will meet in a day-night match in Paarl from December 20 to 22 in Zimbabwe´s only warm-up match before South Africa stages its first day-night Test, a one-off match in Port Elizabeth from December 26 to 29.
De Villiers, former South Africa’s captain, has not played in a Test since January 2016, firstly because of an elbow injury and then because he decided to take a break from the five-day format.
During his extended break he gave up the captaincy, which is now held by Faf du Plessis. He has only appeared in one first-class match during the current season.
Steyn, on the other hand, has been in and out. He suffered a broken shoulder in a Test in Australia in November 2016 and only started playing again in November this year.
The pacer has shown impressive form in four T20 matches for his franchise, the Titans, taking six wickets at an average of 13.50 and conceding only 5.78 runs an over. He has not played in a first-class match since his injury. – AFP