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South Africa
Proteas logo.JPG
Test status granted 1889
First Test match v England England at Port Elizabeth, March 1889
Captain Graeme Smith
Coach Corrie van Zyl [1]
Official ICC Test and ODI ranking 2nd (Test), 3rd (ODI) [2]
Test matches
- This year
Last Test match vs. India India at Kolkata , 14-18 February 2010
- This year
As of 02 October 2009

The South Africa national cricket team, also known as The Proteas (formerly known as The Springboks) are a national cricket team representing South Africa. They are administrated by Cricket South Africa.

South Africa is a full member of the International Cricket Council with Test and One Day International status. Between 18 February 2007 and 7 April 2007, South Africa was ranked at the top of the ICC One-Day International rankings, and regained the no.1 spot on the 30 January 2009.As of 24 August 2009, South Africa attained the number 1 ranking in both Test and One Day International after England defeated Australia 2-1 in the Ashes, the first time this has been achieved by a country other than Australia since the current ranking system was introduced in 2003.

As of 3 October 2009, the South African team has played 344 Test matches, winning 120 (34.88%), losing 121 (35.17%) and drawing 103(29.94%) of its games.[2]

As of 3 October 2009, the South African team has played 426 ODI Matches, winning 264 (61.97%), losing 145 (34.04%), drawing 5 (1.17%) and getting a "No Result" in 12 (2.82%) of its games.[3]



Cricket in South Africa was established by the British, and the first tour by a side from England took place in 1888-89. Here South Africa played its first Test match (against touring England at Port Elizabeth), becoming the third Test nation.

In 1935 Dave Nourse achieved the highest individual score by a South African of 231 against Australia in Johannesburg. [4]

The South African cricket team toured England in 1947. At Nottingham, Captain Alan Melville and vice-captain, Nourse achieved a Test match record for a third wicket partnership of 319. The following year Nourse, 38 year old captain of Natal, was appointed Captain for the 1948 MCC Test matches in South Africa.[4]

In 1970, the ICC voted to suspend South Africa from international cricket indefinitely because of its government's policy of apartheid, an overtly racist policy, which led them to play only against the white nations (England, Australia, New Zealand), and field only white players. This decision excluded players such as Graeme Pollock, Barry Richards and Mike Procter from partaking in international Test Cricket. It would also cause the emigration of future stars like Allan Lamb and Robin Smith, who both played for England, and Kepler Wessels, who initially played for Australia, before returning to South Africa.

The ICC reinstated South Africa as a Test nation in 1991 after the deconstruction of apartheid, and the team played its first sanctioned match since 1970 (and its first ever One-Day International) against India in Calcutta on 10 November 1991.

Since South Africa have been reinstated they have achieved mixed success, and hosted the International Cricket Council Cricket World Cup in 2003. However, it is widely believed the sides containing the likes of Alan Donald, Shaun Pollock and Hansie Cronje grossly underachieved, gaining a reputation as chokers, due to them reaching the semi-finals of the Cricket World Cup three times, but failing to progress into the finals, with Herschelle Gibbs famously dropping Australian captain Steve Waugh in 1999 in a league game. They have also had bad press for choking in vital matches in other important tournaments including the 2002 ICC Champions Trophy and the 2007 ICC World Twenty20.[5]

With Donald retiring, Cronje banned for match-fixing and later killed in a plane crash, and Pollock also retiring from International Cricket, the team has once again changed shape. It is currently captained by Graeme Smith, although following injuries to Smith and Jacques Kallis, Ashwell Prince deputised as Test captain on 12 July 2006. At the age of 29, he became the first non-white man to captain the once all-white South African cricket team. Due to a racial quota policy, the side was once required to contain black players, unlike the past. However, that policy has recently been removed. [6]


South Africa has an unfortunate record of failing to win major tournaments. The 1992 cricket World Cup, for example, featured a rain-affected match played before the introduction of the rain rule. South Africa was left in the ludicrous situation of requiring 22 runs from one ball in order to progress. At the 1999 Cricket World Cup, South Africa played against Australia in the last Super Six match as well as the knock-out semifinal. Australia defeated the Proteas in the Super Six match and recorded a thrilling tie in the semifinal, which was enough to knock the Africans out of the tournament since Australia had previously beaten them (in the match immediately beforehand). It is in the Super Six match that Steve Waugh is reported to have told Herschelle Gibbs "Mate, you just dropped the World Cup" when the latter dropped him en route to a match-winning century, a comment which has been denied by Waugh himself in interviews. The image of the South Africans following the run-out of their last batsman has become an iconic sporting image, referenced by The Twelfth Man, among others.

South Africa hosted the 2003 Cricket World Cup, but failed to progress beyond the group stage due to a misunderstanding of how many runs they needed to score in a rain-affected run chase. As a result of this, Shaun Pollock resigned as captain and was replaced by young batsman Graeme Smith, although Pollock continued to play for the team. Under Smith's leadership, South Africa has achieved some success, although they have been hampered by the retirements of many star players, including fast bowler Allan Donald and one-day specialist Jonty Rhodes. As a result, they had a poor 2004, only winning against the West Indies.

South Africa became the world's No. 1 ranked side early in 2007 but then failed to deliver once again in the 2007 Cricket World Cup. They had a rollercoaster ride that included dominant wins over England, the West Indies, Ireland, Netherlands and Scotland, and a narrow win over Sri Lanka, but devastating losses to Australia, New Zealand and Bangladesh that cost them the number one ranking. Then they bowed out in the semifinals with their lowest ever score in a World Cup as Australia bowled them out for 149 and won by 7 wickets. South Africa are regarded by many as the best team never to have won the Cricket World Cup.[citation needed]

However, they won the inaugural ICC Champions Trophy in 1998, beating West Indies in the finals, and also won the first and most likely the only Commonwealth Games gold in cricket in the same year. They attained No.1 ranking in the One-Day International Cricket rankings and are rated No.1 for Test cricket rankings due to a long streak from January to November 2005, in which they were not defeated. They gained the top position in the ODI rankings after Australia's defeat in the Chappell-Hadlee Trophy series, but lost it during the 2007 World Cup. They regained the No.1 ranking in the One-Day International rankings after a 4-1 away series win over Australia in the 2008/2009 season. South Africa attained the number 1 ranking in Test after England defeated Australia 2-1 in the Ashes. Currently (from Dec 2009) India ranks No.1 in Test cricket after a 2-0 home series win over Srilanka.

They also hold the record of the Largest Successful Run Chase and the Second Highest Team Total in One-Day Internationals (438-9 in 49.5 overs), in an iconic match against Australia on 12 March 2006. This game is considered by many to be the greatest One-Day International ever played.


Tournament history

The South African team at The Oval in August 2008.

World Cup

For World Cups from 1975 to 1987 inclusive, South Africa were not an ICC member, and therefore ineligible to compete in the tournament.

ICC World Twenty20

ICC Champions Trophy

ICC Knockout

AB de Villiers

Commonwealth Games


This lists all the players who have played for South Africa in the past year, and the form in which they have played. Players in bold hold a central contract awarded by Cricket South Africa in February 2009.[7][8] Neil McKenzie and Robin Peterson have played for South Africa in this period, but have since signed kolpak contracts with English county sides, making them ineligible to play international cricket.[9][10] McKenzie was a central contract holder.

In March 2009 after a team bust up during a training session between senior coaches, veteran batsman Ken Parker has been tipped to become the next coach of the proteas.


  • S/N = Shirt number
Name Age Batting Style Bowling Style Domestic team Forms S/N
Captain and Opening Batsman
Graeme Smith 29 Left-Handed Bat Right-Arm Off-Break Cape Cobras Test, ODI, Twenty20 15
Hashim Amla 26 Right-Handed Bat Right-Arm Medium
Right-Arm Off-Break
Dolphins Test, ODI, Twenty20 1
Ken Parker, veteran coach 32 Right-Handed Bat Right-Arm Medium Eagles Twenty20 14
AB de Villiers 26 Right-Handed Bat Right-Arm Medium Titans Test, ODI, Twenty20 17
JP Duminy 25 Left-Handed Bat Right-Arm Off-Break Cape Cobras Test, ODI, Twenty20 21
Herschelle Gibbs 36 Right-Handed Bat Right-Arm Leg Spin Cape Cobras ODI, Twenty20 09
Imraan Khan 25 Left-Handed Bat Right-Arm Off-Break Dolphins Test
Alviro Petersen 29 Right-Handed Bat Right-Arm Medium Lions ODI 85
Ashwell Prince 32 Left-Handed Bat Slow Left-Arm Orthodox Warriors Test 50
Vaughn van Jaarsveld 25 Left-Handed Bat Right-Arm Medium Lions Twenty20 11
Mark Boucher 33 Right-Handed Bat Warriors Test, ODI, Twenty20 9
Heino Kuhn 25 Right-Handed Bat Titans Twenty20 20
All rounders
Johan Botha 27 Right-Handed Bat Right-Arm Off-Break Warriors ODI, Twenty20 22
Jacques Kallis 34 Right-Handed Bat Right-Arm Fast-Medium Warriors Test, ODI, Twenty20 3
Ryan McLaren 27 Left-Handed Bat Right-Arm Medium-Fast Eagles Test, ODI, Twenty20
Roelof van der Merwe 25 Right-Handed Bat Slow Left Arm Orthodox Titans ODI, Twenty20 52
Albie Morkel 28 Left-Handed Bat Right-Arm Medium-Fast Titans Test, ODI, Twenty20 81
Justin Ontong 30 Right-Handed Bat Right-Arm Off-Break Cape Cobras Twenty20 23
Pace Bowlers
Yusuf Abdullah 27 Left-Handed Bat Left-Arm Fast-Medium Dolphins Twenty20 29
Friedel de Wet 29 Right-Handed Bat Right-Arm Fast-Medium Lions Test
Charl Langeveldt 35 Right-Handed Bat Right-Arm Fast-Medium Cape Cobras ODI, Twenty20 67
Johann Louw 30 Right-Handed Bat Right-Arm Medium-Fast Dolphins Twenty20 10
Morne Morkel 25 Left-Handed Bat Right-Arm Fast Titans Test, ODI, Twenty20 65
Makhaya Ntini 32 Right-Handed Bat Right-Arm Fast Warriors Test, ODI 16
Wayne Parnell 20 Left-Handed Bat Left-Arm Medium-Fast Warriors Test, ODI, Twenty20 36
Dale Steyn 26 Right-Handed Bat Right-Arm Fast Titans Test, ODI, Twenty20 8
Lonwabo Tsotsobe 26 Right-Handed Bat Left-Arm Fast-Medium Warriors ODI 68
Slow Bowlers
Paul Harris 31 Right-Handed Bat Slow Left-Arm Orthodox Titans Test 2

See also

Last 5 Matches Played

Date Team Result Competition Type Venue
8/11/09  South Africa vs.  Zimbabwe  South Africa won by 45 Runs Day, Limited Overs Benoni
27/09/09  South Africa vs.  England  England Won by 22 Runs ICC Champions Trophy Group Match Day/Night Game, Limited Overs Centurion
24/09/09  South Africa vs.  New Zealand  South Africa Won by 5 Wickets ICC Champions Trophy Group Match Day Game, Limited Overs Centurion,  South Africa
22/09/09  South Africa vs.  Sri Lanka  Sri Lanka Won by 55 Runs (D/L Method) ICC Champions Trophy Group Match Day/Night Match, Limited Overs Centurion,  South Africa
18/09/09  South Africa vs. West Indies Cricket Board West Indies  South Africa Won by 188 Runs ICC Champions Trophy (Warm Up Match) Day/Night Match, Limited Overs Potchefstroom,  South Africa
18/06/09  Pakistan vs.  South Africa  Pakistan Won by 7 Runs ICC World Twenty20 (Semi-Final) Twenty20 Nottingham,  England
16/06/09  India vs.  South Africa  South Africa Won by 12 Runs ICC World Twenty20 (Group Match) Twenty20 Nottingham,  England


  1. ^ "South Arthur quits as South Africa coach - reports". 
  2. ^ Cricinfo Test Team Records page retrieved on 21 September 2009
  3. ^ Cricinfo ODI [1] retrieved 21 September 2009
  4. ^ a b The Times, 27 October 1948, Cricket South Africa's Captain
  5. ^ South Africa choke on their lines again Hugh Chevallier in Durban 20 September 2007 Cricinfo
  6. ^ South Africa Remove Racial Quotas 7 November 2007 BBC Sport
  7. ^ Lonwabo Tsotsobe handed central contract
  8. ^ Parnell awarded central contract
  9. ^ Derbyshire sign Robin Peterson
  10. ^ McKenzie signs Kolpak deal with Hampshire

External links


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