Laura Wolvaardt named South Africa interim skipper

Cricket South Africa has named Laura Wolvaardt as the interim South Africa captain for the Pakistan tour after Sune Luus decided not to continue in the role

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Women's CricZone Staff
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Laura Wolvaardt

Laura Wolvaardt to take over as captain for Pakistan tour © Getty Images

The Cricket South Africa (CSA) has announced Laura Wolvaardt as the interim skipper for the women's cricket tour of Pakistan and New Zealand series on Thursday (August 24). This decision was taken after the resignation of Sune Luus from the post and vice captain Chloe Tryon’s request for a leave of absence from the Pakistan tour. 

Luus led South Africa to their maiden appearance in an ICC World Cup earlier this year when South Africa made it to the final of the T20 World Cup 2023 at New Lands in Cape Town. She has led the side in one Test, 34 ODIs and 34 T20Is. The allrounder decided not to continue as captain even as South Africa retained Hilton Moreeng as the head coach.

“I’m very excited to be able to contribute in another way too, and not just in batting. It still feels surreal at the moment but it will all become more real when I meet up with the team in Pakistan," Wolvaardt said.

“It’s a massive honour to be offered this position as captain for the next two tours. It’s something that I have always aspired to do, having played in this team for a couple of years. Having more of a leadership role is something I’ve wanted to take on. It’ll help me as a cricketer and learning to think as a captain on the field will hopefully help my batting as well."

The 24-year-old made her debut against England in February 2016 and since then she has scored 4272 runs from her 133 international matches. Furthermore, she was the highest run-scorer with 230 runs in the recent T20 World Cup, which adds to her impressive track record.

“What I can bring to the role is the experience that I have on the side. I’ve been playing international cricket since I was 16 years old, I know quite a lot of players in the circuit and I’ve been playing in the leagues as well, so I’ve played a lot of cricket in recent years and hopefully, I’m able to use that experience and the knowledge to my advantage when I captain the team,” Wolvaardt added.

With the retirement of Shabnim Ismail, the onus will be on Marizanne Kapp and Ayabonga Khaka to lead the pace attack with young Nadine de Klerk playing the supporting role.

“It is very new to me but I am keen to learn and do everything that I can to do well in the position. I am lucky that I have a couple of senior players within the squad around me as well, who would be able to help me and guide me if I do need help along the way,” Wolvaardt concluded.

CSA will review Wolvaardt's role at the helm after these two bi-lateral series against Pakistan and New Zealand. The opening batter has agreed to this decision while taking up the role.

Enoch Nkwe, the CSA Director of Cricket, congratulated Wolvaardt on her appointment and expressed confidence in her leadership abilities.

"Congratulations to Laura on her appointment as the captain of the Proteas Women's team for the upcoming tours. Laura's dedication, leadership acumen, and cricketing prowess have been evident throughout her career. Her ability to stay composed under pressure and her deep understanding of the game make her an ideal candidate to lead the team," Nkwe said.

“As the Proteas Women embark on these critical tours, CSA wishes Laura and the entire team the very best. The challenges ahead are immense, but with Laura's leadership and the team's collective efforts, they are well-poised to deliver outstanding performances on the field."

South Africa tour of Pakistan will commence from September 1. It includes three T20Is and three ODIs with the ODIs that are starting on September 8 being part of the ICC Women's Championship (IWC) for the 2022-25 cycle.

South Africa squad: Laura Wolvaardt (c), Anneke Bosch, Tazmin Brits, Nadine de Klerk, Mieke de Ridder (wk), Lara Goodall, Sinalo Jafta (wk), Marizanne Kapp, Ayabonga Khaka, Masabata Klaas, Sune Luus, Nonkululeko Mlaba, Tumi Sekhukhune, Nondumiso Shangase, Delmi Tucker

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