In what could be signal for his end of International cricket odyssey, South Africa has excluded Dale Steyn from the Central Contract list announced on Tuesday.
Steyn is the notable omission in the list released by Cricket South Africa for the 2020-21 season while former skipper Faf du Plessis has been re-contracted by the Proteas.
It is despite the fact that Steyn has repeatedly expressed his intentions to be a part of South Africa’s squad for the T20 World Cup and featured in three T20Is during the home Series against England and Australia last month.
Steyn officially bowed out of Test cricket in August 2019 but made himself available for the white-ball formats, though he was overlooked for selection for the T20I assignment in India later that year.
South Africa have also excluded the retired duo of Hashim Amla and Vernon Philander from the contract list whereas Theunis de Bruyn has been axed due to his poor run at the highest level.
Anrich Nortje, Dwaine Pretorius and Rassie van der Dussen are new entrants in the list warning contract upgrades following their consistent performances across all forms of the game.
Beuran Hendricks has been rewarded for his profitable Test debut against England, where he picked five wickets, by getting his maiden national contract.
“The upgrade system will again be in place this year. Those players performing and selected for the Proteas during the 2020/21 season and who are not contracted can qualify for a National Contract upgrade,” the CSA media release stated.
“We have contracted 16 men’s players and 14 women’s players which we feel is the appropriate number to maintain our national squads across the various formats,” CSA Acting Chief Executive Dr. Jacques Faul noted.
“This enables us to contract both our Test players as well as those who are limited-overs specialists. We have decided to keep the 17th men’s contract open for the moment and players can qualify for it through performance.”
List: Temba Bavuma, Quinton de Kock, Faf du Plessis, Dean Elgar, Beuran Hendricks, Reeza Hendricks, Keshav Maharaj, Aiden Markram, David Miller, Lungi Ngidi, Anrich Nortje, Andile Phehlukwayo, Dwaine Pretorius, Kagiso Rabada, Tabraiz Shamsi, Rassie van der Dussen