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first_imgSouth Africa have named three of their biggest stars – AB de Villiers, Dale Steyn and Vernon Philander – in the 14-man squad for next week’s day-night, inaugural four-day contest against Zimbabwe in Port Elizabeth.Skipper Faf du Plessis, who was uncertain to play the four-day Test from December 26-29, has also been declared fit to play. This gives South Africa a full-strength side to get into groove before the series against world no.1 India gets underway from January 5.De Villiers’ last Test was against England in Pretoria in January 2016 after which he asked for time out from the long format of the game while Steyn has been recovering from a serious shoulder injury suffered against Australia at Perth just over a year ago.Philander missed the 2-0 series win over Bangladesh in September and October following an injury on tour to England in mid-year.Faf du Plessis, who initially looked uncertain with a back injury, will lead the side.#Breaking #CSAnews AB, Dale and Vernon back in Proteas Test squad https://t.co/flP8WZyhim #ProteaFire #SAvZIM pic.twitter.com/ArumxdA2GN- Cricket South Africa (@OfficialCSA) December 19, 2017Several former India cricketers feel India have a good chance of upstaging South Africa this time. Virat Kohli’s men have enjoyed a dominant run, winning nine straight Test series over the last two years.India had defeated South Africa 3-0 in a four-Test series back in 2015 and have since brushed aside teams like West Indies, New Zealand, England, Bangladesh, Australia and Sri Lanka.advertisementKohli and Cheteshwar Pujara will be India’s mainstays with the bat along with Murali Vijay and Ajinkya Rahane while the onus with the ball would be on the pacers.Former Team India manager Lalchand Rajput feels Virat Kohli’s men will crush their opponents given their current temperament to dominate every opposition.”The way the Indian team is playing, they are playing tough cricket. With Virat Kohli being the leader, the aggression which he shows, seems to be imbibed in other players too and they want to win at any cost. They want to crush the opponents,” the former Team India manager told PTI.South Africa squad: Faf du Plessis (captain), Hashim Amla, Temba Bavuma, Quinton de Kock, Theunis de Bruyn, AB de Villiers, Dean Elgar, Keshav Maharaj, Aiden Markram, Morne Morkel, Andile Phehlukwayo, Vernon Philander, Kagiso Rabada, Dale Steyn(With inputs from agencies)last_img read more

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