South Africa to resist temptation of full-pace battalion
South Africa says there is no chance it will go into the Gabba Test with four specialist fast bowlers.
Leg-spinner Imran Tahir was expensive and ineffective during the Proteas' drawn tour match with Australia A, finishing with the unflattering figures of 2-157 and going at close to four runs per over on an unforgiving SCG wicket.
Despite Tahir's modest return and the impressive showing from Rory Kleinveldt - the quick likely to miss out on selection for the first Test - South Africa will resist the temptation to unleash a full-pace battalion on the bouncy Gabba wicket.
Morne Morkel, rested from the Australia A match, will return to the line-up, joining the world's top-two ranked bowlers Dale Steyn and Vernon Philander, while star all-rounder Jacques Kallis (flu) will also be back.
South Africa's policy of using a spinner could even hinder Kleinveldt's chances of forcing his way into the team for the third Test at the pace-friendly WACA Ground.
Tahir made his Test debut against Australia in November last year and has gone on to play eight Tests, taking 22 wickets at an average of 35.95.
''To be honest with you, the balance of the side with Kallis being there as the fourth seamer, whether you play four or five [fast bowlers] isn't really going to be that important,'' South Africa assistant coach Russell Domingo said.
''I think we'll always look to have a spinner in the side. Gone are the days when a South African team goes without a spinner.''
That means Kleinveldt, who was only shaded by Steyn as the best bowler of the Australia A match and had figures of 2-60 on the lifeless pitch, is on tour purely as injury cover for arguably the top pace attack on the planet.
''[Kleinveldt] bowled really well,'' Domingo said. ''He's been very impressive in domestic cricket for a while and he's been superb in our preparation this week.'' AAP