Kallis returns to South Africa ODI squad


Jacques Kallis was recalled to South Africa’s one-day squad on Thursday for two home series against Pakistan and India, putting the veteran allrounder in line to play his first ODI in nearly two years.

The 38-year-old Kallis appeared in the last of his 321 ODIs at home against New Zealand in February 2012 and has been rested from the short format since, part of South Africa’s plan to manage his workload ahead of a likely swansong at the 2015 World Cup.

Kallis replaced Twenty20 captain Faf du Plessis in a 14-man squad named by Cricket South Africa for three one-day games against Pakistan this month and three against India in December.

Pakistan-born legspinner Imran Tahir was also retained at the expense of left-arm slow bowler Robin Peterson.

Opening batsman and test captain Graeme Smith returned to the ODI squad after leaving the tour of United Arab Emirates with post-concussion syndrome as a result of being hit on the head by a bouncing delivery from giant Pakistan fast bowler Mohammed Irfan last month.

Smith was advised to rest after experiencing delayed symptoms of blurred vision and dizziness.

Cricket South Africa said Smith had now made “a complete recovery.”

Kallis returned after a long absence, underlining South Africa’s intention to keep him in contention to play at the World Cup in two years, when he will be nearly 40.

Kallis has defied talk of retirement and continues to be one of South Africa’s most consistent performers in test cricket, while making rare appearances for his country in the 50- and 20-over formats.

He has said winning a 50-over World Cup is his last ambition.

Kallis is considered South Africa’s greatest cricketer of the modern era and has made more test and ODI runs than any other South African.

He is also fifth on the country’s list of test wicket-takers and third in ODIs, placing him as one of the games outstanding allrounders.