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SA recall Rudolph after five-year absence

October 22, 2011 17:47 IST

Jacques Rudolph has been recalled to South Africa's squad for next month's two-Test series against Australia after a five-year absence.

"Jacques will open the batting with Graeme Smith," selection convener Andrew Hudson said in a statement on Saturday.

"His experience and form make him an asset to the Proteas and at the age of 30 he has plenty of good years of cricket ahead of him.

"Jacques has underlined once again the importance of good domestic form and the fact that it is the gateway to national selection," Hudson added.

Rudolph played the last of his 35 Tests in August 2006 but has forced his way back into the reckoning through sheer weight of runs.

Jacques RudolfThe dashing left-hander, who scored an unbeaten 222 on his Test debut against Bangladesh, has piled up 568 runs in three games in domestic cricket this season.

Rudolph has hit 2,028 runs in Tests at an average of 36.21.

South Africa also named two uncapped players, Pakistan-born leg-spinner Imran Tahir and all-rounder Vernon Philander, in their squad.

Both have represented their country in limited-overs cricket. Tahir is one of two spinners in the squad alongside left-armer Paul Harris.

Batsman AB de Villiers was included despite carrying a hand injury. His fitness will be assessed ahead of the first Test against Australia in Cape Town starting on Nov. 9.

Squad: Graeme Smith (captain), Hashim Amla, Mark Boucher, AB de Villiers, JP Duminy, Paul Harris, Imran Tahir, Jacques Kallis, Morne Morkel, Vernon Philander, Ashwell Prince, Jacques Rudolph, Dale Steyn, Lonwabo Tsotsobe.

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