Australia have revealed their playing XI for the third Test against South Africa, starting on Thursday (March 22) at Newlands, Cape Town. Skipper Steve Smith and the team management have decided to field the same team for the third occasion in this series after all-rounder Mitchell Marsh and speedster Mitchell Starc recovered in time from their respective injuries.
While Marsh was suffering from a groin strain, Starc was having a sore calf. Nonetheless, both of them pulled up fine after training on Tuesday (March 20).
“I think they’ll be OK. They both had a really good hit out yesterday. Obviously, we had 10 days between Test matches, which is a good break for them. They feel really good so no concerns there,” Steve Smith quoted by cricket.com.au as saying on the eve of the third Test.
On the other hand, South Africa will disclose their playing XI at the toss. The hosts are still uncertain about their two selection decisions. According to cricket.com.au, Proteas skipper Faf du Plessis on match eve stated that fast bowler Lungi Ngidi is battling an injured toe, while middle-order batsman Temba Bavuma has recovered from a broken finger.
“We’ve got 13 in mind. We’ve got Temba (Bavuma), who’s ready to go again, so it’s between him and Theunis (de Bruyn) and then also a decision between Morne (Morkel) and Lungi, which one we think will be better for the conditions,” Du Plessis said.
“Lungi bowled really well the previous game. He’s also got a little bit of a toe problem, which is probably why the consideration is happening between the two of them. I don’t know exactly what it is but it is bothering him and keeping him back a little bit. If he’s not 100 per cent then it’s a very easy decision for us.
“What counts in Morne’s favour is he’s a very fit bowler, he can bowl long spells. I think that’s very important going into this Test match, especially if we have only three seamers and a spinner. We’ll have our three bowlers that has the biggest tank when it comes to bowling a lot of overs,” the South African captain added.
The ongoing four-match Test series between South Africa and Australia is currently poised at 1-1. While Australia had won the opening Test in Durban 118 runs, the hosts had bounced back emphatically to clinch the second Test in Port Elizabeth by 6 wickets.
Australia’s Playing XI for Cape Town Test:
David Warner, Cameron Bancroft, Usman Khawaja, Steve Smith (c), Shaun Marsh, Mitchell Marsh, Tim Paine (wk), Pat Cummins, Mitchell Starc, Nathan Lyon, Josh Hazlewood
South Africa’s Squad for Cape Town Test:
Faf du Plessis (c), Hashim Amla, Temba Bavuma, Theunis de Bruyn, Dean Elgar, Heinrich Klaasen, Quinton de Kock, Keshav Maharaj, Aiden Markram, Morne Morkel, Chris Morris, Wiaan Mulder, Lungi Ngidi, Duanne Olivier, Vernon Philander, Kagiso Rabada, AB de Villiers.