Boucher: Getting Rabada fit for England Test ‘the biggest priority’

Getting Kagiso Rabada fit for the first test against England on August 17 is “the top priority for our test side,” said coach Mark Boucher. Rabada missed the third T20I against England and both games against Ireland after injuring ligaments in his left ankle, but South Africa are hoping to have him ready for the red ball of the tour.
“KG has bowled a little today and he will bowl a little tomorrow. He seems to be fine. But we will try to work him back. His loads are a little low at the moment, but we will do everything we can to try and make him fit for the first test,” said Boucher after South Africa won Ireland 2-0.

“That’s the top priority for our Test side – to get KG fired. We know what an important part of the team he is. That’s our biggest goal: to try and get him fit for the first Test.”

Even before his injury, Rabada hasn’t looked his best lately. After resting for the ODI series, he returned to play two T20Is, bowling seven overs in the two matches and taking 1 for 75. Before that, Rabada played in the South African series in India, bowling 13 overs in four matches with a return of 2 for 86. He has not played Test cricket since South Africa’s tour of New Zealand in February, where he was their leading wicket-taker, and missed the series against Bangladesh which collided with the IPL.

Should Rabada not recover in time for the first Test, it would be a second big blow to South Africa. They are already without white ball captain and Test vice captain Temba Bavuma on this tour as he is recovering from an elbow injury. They have six other seamen on their Test squad: Lungi Ngidi, Anrich Nortje (who hasn’t played Tests in over a year), Marco Jansen, Duanne Olivier, Lutho Sipamla and Glenton Stuurman.