Hashim Amla, Vernon Philander and Wayne Parnell have all been named in the Western Province squad
Duanne Olivier, Hardus Viljoen, Kyle Abbott, Simon Harmer and Stiaan van Zyl, who had all left the South Africa set-up with Kolpak deals, have returned to the country’s Division 1 competition for the upcoming season.
All Kolpak registrations were cancelled at the end of 2020 following the end of the United Kingdom’s transition period with the European Union, and meant that those playing county cricket on such deals were released from their terms and were eligible to represent South Africa again.
Earlier this year, Abbott became the first high-profile returnee to South African domestic cricket after signing a short-term deal with the Titans ahead of the One-Day Cup.
On Tuesday, the CSA announced the final squads of the eight top-tier provincial teams after the new domestic structure was finalised early last month by an independent committee. South Africa’s revamped two-tiered domestic set-up, which eliminates the franchise model and reverts to the old provincial set-up, has come in place this (2021-2022) season, and in it, eight teams will make up the first tier – with 16 contracted players each – and seven teams will play in the second tier – with 11 contracted players each. Boland, Central Gauteng Lions, Eastern Province, Free State, KwaZulu-Natal (Coastal), North West, Northerns and Western Province are the eight teams that will compete in Division 1.
Meanwhile, big guns such as Hashim Amla, Vernon Philander and Wayne Parnell have all been named in the Western Province squad.
“This is an exciting time for everyone involved in South African cricket as we look ahead to a new era that will start in 2021/22,” CSA acting chief executive officer Pholetsi Moseki said in a statement. “At initial glance, the squads all look extremely well balanced and that can only bode well for everyone as we anticipate a strengthened domestic cricket system.”
Chris Morris, who has not been awarded a national contract, has signed with Northerns.