Prior to the start of India’s tour of South Africa, the hosts have been handed a big blow as star player Quinton de Kock is confirmed to miss at least one Test match of the three-match series. This is because the Proteas cricketer is awaiting the birth of his first child and with wife expected to give birth early in January, there is every possibility that he could in fact miss the second as well as the third Test match against the Men in Blue.
De Kock’s unavailability for two Test matches is also being speculated owing to the strict quarantine measures in view of the Omicron variant of Coronavirus which is spreading from that part of the world. This will be a big blow to the home team as India’s job might become easier as they search for their maiden Test series win in the victory nation and the absence of an experienced campaigner and proven match-winner in De Kock is sure to tilt the balance in India’s favour.
Kyle Verreynne and Ryan Rickelton can replace Quinton de Kock: Reports
It is being learned that either of Kyle Verreynne and Ryan Rickelton could replace De Kock in the side, although an official confirmation is awaited. Verreynne had made his debut for South Africa during the tour of West Indies in June. At that time, he had replaced Temba Bavuma in the side but scored 39 runs in three innings. Since then he has played three first-class matches for Western Province and made a half-century.
On the other hand, Rickelton has still not received his country’s cap but has been in a better form in recent times. He is among the leading run-getters in first-class cricket this season and has scored two first-class tons in his last three matches.
Meanwhile, India have also been handed a big blow their star opener Rohit Sharma being ruled out of the Test series due to an injury. A call on his ODI availability is yet to be taken.