Klusener back in South African squad
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Klusener back in South African squad

All-rounder Lance Klusener was on Tuesday named in a South African one-day squad for the first time since he was dropped after the 2003 World Cup.

india Updated: Jan 21, 2004 11:18 IST

All-rounder Lance Klusener was Tuesday named in a South African one-day international squad for the first time since he was dropped after the 2003 World Cup.

He was named in a 14-man squad for the first two of five limited overs matches against the West Indies. The series starts at Newlands, Cape Town, Sunday.

Klusener, 32, one of the hardest-hitting batsmen in the world game and player of the tournament in the 1999 World Cup in England, sued the United Cricket Board for unfair dismissal after he was left out of the side for a tour of England last year and was dropped from the board's list of contracted players.

Klusener claimed he had been told by the selectors that he was being rested from a tour of Bangladesh which preceded the England trip and had been led to believe he would be picked for England.

The case was settled out of court recently and Klusener was given a short-term contract from January to April 2004.

He backed up his claim for selection with consistent performances for KwaZulu-Natal in domestic cricket and his chances received a further boost when rival all-rounder Andrew Hall was put of action with a back injury in the fourth Test against the West Indies which ended at Centurion Tuesday.

Selection convenor Omar Henry welcomed Klusener back.

"We are delighted with the form he has shown with the ball this season and we are looking forward to him to continue with that form for the national team," said Henry.

South African captain Graeme Smith, who was appointed after the country's 2003 World Cup failure, criticised Klusener at a public function last year, saying he was a "disruptive influence".

Meanwhile Klusener said in a newspaper interview after he was dropped that he had not agreed with the tactics and preparation methods of coach Eric Simons during the World Cup.

Klusener has subsequently spoken to both men, who said before the squad was announced that any disagreements were in the past.

There is one uncapped player in the squad, all-rounder Albie Morkel, 22, who made 132 for Easterns against the West Indians in Benoni earlier this month.

Left-arm spinner Nicky Boje, who suffered a broken leg during the tour of England, was picked for a South Africa A team which will play the West Indians in Paarl Friday, despite not having yet made a return to provincial cricket.

South Africa: Graeme Smith (captain), Mark Boucher (vice-captain), Boeta Dippenaar, Herschelle Gibbs, Jacques Kallis, Lance Klusener, Albie Morkel, Andre Nel, Makhaya Ntini, Robin Peterson, Shaun Pollock, Ashwell Prince, Jacques Rudolph, Morne van Wyk.

South Africa A: Neil McKenzie (captain), Martin van Jaarsveld, Loots Bosman, Hashim Amla, Justin Ontong, Justin Kemp, Nicky Boje, Thami Tsolekile, Garnett Kruger, Mfuneko Ngam, Roger Telemachus.

First Published: Jan 21, 2004 11:18 IST