Proteas should call upon McLaren if Kallis fails to recuperate before Perth Test
South Africa should give all rounder Ryan McLaren a chance to play in the series-deciding Perth Test match at Perth in case injured Jacques Kallis fails to recover on time, according to cricket writer Rob Houwing.
"Clearly they (South Africa) will do everything they can in frantic, physiotherapy terms to get him (Kallis) suitably ready to bat in Perth - he has had a sparkling tour thus far and sports an average of 75," Houwing wrote in his column for Sports24.
"His impressive resistance in both innings at Adelaide suggests that he would probably be capable of doing so again at the WACA," he added.
"My recommendation would be to play him anyway, even if it means that he has to bat a notch too high, perhaps, at No 7 in a line-up reassuringly still featuring Kallis among the established core of Proteas front-line batsmen," he wrote.
Houwing further added: "But if Kallis is absent, and the out-of-touch Rudolph thus stays, the specialist batting department will contain some measure of vulnerability - enough to suggest that late tour call-up Ryan McLaren offers quite attractive shore-up possibilities in the lower middle-order."
"In a Kallis-less side, I would then be mightily tempted to employ this all-rounder (first-class batting average 30.57, highest score 140) at the expense of slightly unlucky Rory Kleinveldt," he wrote.
"McLaren would bat at seven, with Peterson then under a little less pressure at No 8, and also serve as seriously handy fourth seamer," he further added.
"The 29-year-old McLaren has been in pretty decent form with both ball and bat as captain of the Knights in the domestic Momentum One-Day Cup, and performed more than respectably in his lone Test against England at the Wanderers in 2009/10, when the Proteas produced a muscular effort to win by an innings and salvage a 1-1 outcome from the four-match series," he concluded.