Hopeful South Africa have named pacer Kagiso Rabada, who has been suspended for the rest of the ongoing four-match Test series against Australia, in their 17-member squad for the third Test that begins at Newlands on Thursday. Rabada appealed against his two-match ban and his case will be heard by New Zealand judicial commissioner Michael Heron by teleconference on Monday, with a verdict due to be announced within 48 hours. In case, the number one Test bowler in the world loses his appeal, Duanne Olivier and Chris Morris are also there in the squad to take Rabada's place in the playing XI.
Rabada was the Man of the Match in South Africa's series-levelling six-wicket victory in the second Test in Port Elizabeth. But he made contact with Steve Smith after dismissing the Australian captain and was penalised three demerit points, which took him to the eight-point threshold which triggers an automatic two-match ban.
If Rabada is absent, the selectors may be tempted to pick not just a direct replacement but also consider adding a fast bowling all-rounder such as Morris to bolster the bowling options.
SA Chief selector Linda Zondi said the squad would be pruned in time to allow players not selected for the Test team to play for their franchises in domestic matches starting on Thursday.
Both teams took a break from cricket after the Port Elizabeth Test but will start their preparations for the third Test on Monday.
South African squad: Faf du Plessis (captain), Hashim Amla, Temba Bavuma, Quinton de Kock (WK), Theunis de Bruyn, AB de Villiers, Dean Elgar, Heinrich Klaasen (WK), Keshav Maharaj, Aiden Markram, Morne Morkel, Chris Morris, Wiaan Mulder, Lungi Ngidi, Duanne Olivier, Vernon Philander and Kagiso Rabada.
(With AFP inputs)