Tony de Zorzi of the Multiply Titans will captain the Cricket South Africa (CSA) Emerging Squad which leaves on Sunday for the sub-continent to play their Sri Lanka counterparts in two four-day unofficial Test matches and three One-Day International (ODI) matches.

The players are all part of the National Academy programme which is aimed at the successful transition of players from senior provincial cricket into professional cricket.

“This programme is a highly important part of our cricket development pipeline,” commented Vinnie Barnes, CSA High Performance Manager. “It has the long-term goal of not just producing professional players and strengthening the player base but also of producing future Proteas.

“If we look at the team that undertook a similar tour to Sri Lanka in 2015, it was captained by Heinrich Klaasen and included other current Proteas in Aiden Markram and Junior Dala. And there are others over the last few years who have already made their mark at franchise level. These include Zubayr Hamza, Kyle Verrynne, Senuran Muthusamy and Tladi Bokako.

“I would like to thank Sri Lanka Cricket for hosting us for the third time in the last four years. The bulk of international cricket is played on the sub-continent these days and it is vital our emerging talent is exposed to the playing conditions there as early as possible,” concluded Barnes.

CSA Emerging Squad: Tony de Zorzi (Multiply Titans), Ryan Rickleton (bizhub Highveld Lions), Jiveshan Pillay (Multiply Titans), Matthew Breezke (Warriors), Kagiso Rapulana (bizhub Highveld Lions), Raynard van Tonder (VKB Knights), Thsepang Dithole (bizhub Highveld Lions), Gary Mahlokana (Multiply Titans), Smangaliso Nhlebela (Hollywoodbets Dolphins), Junaid Dawood (World Sports Betting Cape Cobras), Onke Nyaku (Warriors), Ethan Bosch (Hollywoodbets Dolphins), Nandre Burger (bizhub Highveld Lions), Kerwin Mungroo (Hollywoodbets Dolphins), Lutho Sipamla (Warriors)

Management team: Shukri Conrad (head coach), Shane Burger (assistant coach), Nandile Tyali (fitness trainer), Nick Moffitt (physiotherapist), Hendrikus Coertzen (video analyst), Maurice Aronstam (mental conditioning coach)

Itinerary

July 26-29: 1st four-day match, Katunayake

August 2-5: 2nd four-day match, Hambanthota

August 9: 1st ODI, RDICS, Dambulla

August 11: 2nd OD, RDICS, Dambulla

August 14: 3rd ODI, SSC, Colombo