Johannesburg: South Africa's selectors have expressed confidence in the players that won the Test series in New Zealand 1-0 and named an unchanged squad for the tour of England in July and August. South Africa will aim to challenge England's No. 1 Test ranking during the three-match series.
"The players fully deserve a vote of confidence after the outstanding manner in which they outplayed New Zealand away from home," Andrew Hudson, the convenor of selectors, said. "We are now building up excellent depth in both the batting and bowling departments. This was highlighted by JP Duminy's century when he was called up as an 11th hour replacement for Jacques Kallis.
"I believe most other countries would be very happy to have the fast bowling resources we have at the moment. Marchant de Lange has been most impressive since his outstanding debut against Sri Lanka while Lonwabo Tsotsobe gives us a left-arm option. Consistency has also been one of the key pillars of our selection policy and this is also contributing to our success on the field."
Hudson said Graeme Smith had recovered from his ankle surgery and had begun training with coach Gary Kirsten. "Graeme has been outstanding both as our leading run-scorer and as captain during our last two Test tours of England and I have every confidence he will continue that form," he said. The first Test at The Oval will be Smith's 100th an he is also likely to surpass Allan Border as the most capped captain during the series.
Squad: Graeme Smith (capt), Hashim Amla, Mark Boucher, Marchant de Lange, AB de Villiers, JP Duminy, Imran Tahir, Jacques Kallis, Morne Morkel, Alviro Petersen, Robin Peterson, Vernon Philander, Jacques Rudolph, Dale Steyn, Lonwabo Tsotsobe.