Cricket South Africa (CSA) on Tuesday announced the 15-strong ODI and T20 squads that will face the England Women’s Academy in April.
Both squads see the return of familiar names such as Marcia Letsoalo, who had to take a break from international cricket because of work commitments and Susan Benade, who has been making major waves in the CSA Women’s Provincial League over the past two seasons.
The squads were chosen at a camp, which was held this past weekend in Kimberley where regional scouts nominated 25 players who were put through their paces for national team selection.
Coach, Yashin Ebrahim-Hassen is excited about the series against England, “After this last camp, I can say that I am comfortable with the selections we have made. It is good to have players like Susan (Benade) and Marcia (Letsoalo) back. Susan is an explosive cricketer but still has to prove her fitness,” he said.
The squads also see three new caps: Suné Luus and Stacy Lackay who were selected for the SA under-19 squad in December of last year and Ayabonga Khaka.
“We are blessed to have so much experience in these two squads, players like Susan, Marcia, PJ (Sunette Loubser) and Ali (Alison Hodgkinson) will offer the youngsters guidance and move them in the right direction,” said Ebrahim-Hassen.
We also have young players who have a lot of experience such as our captain Mignon du Preez and Dané van Niekerk to give the team calmness, stability and balance. I believe we have a really good balance of experience and inexperience, refined and raw talent,” Ebrahim-Hassen continued.
The tour against the England Academy comprises three-match ODI and T20 series. This is in preparation for the ICC Women’s World T20 tournament in Sri Lanka this September. It is the perfect opportunity for players to get vital T20 international exposure as there is little domestic T20 in women’s cricket.
“Apart from the Super 4s competition, which at present only takes place for one weekend each year, our players are not getting any T20 exposure. I am happy that T20 cricket will be given a bigger spotlight next year when the structure of the women’s competitions is amended,” Ebrahim-Hassen commented.
“We have done our research and we expect strong and difficult competition from the England side, but I am looking forward to seeing what our side can do.”
SA women’s ODI squad:
Mignon du Preez (capt), Dané van Niekerk, Shabnim Ismail, Shandré Fritz, Sunette Loubser, Trisha Chetty (vice capt), Marizanne Kapp, Chloe Tryon, Dinesha Devnarain, Yolandi van der Westhuizen, Yolandi Potgieter, Marcia Letsoalo, Alison Hodgkinson, Susan Benade, Ayabonga Khaka.
SA women’s T20I squad:
Mignon du Preez (capt), Dané van Niekerk, Shabnim Ismail, Shandré Fritz, Sunette Loubser, Trisha Chetty (vice capt), Marizanne Kapp, Chloe Tryon, Dinesha Devnarain, Yolandi van der Westhuizen, Stacy Lackay, Ayabonga Khaka, Suné Luus, Alison Hodgkinson, Susan Benade.