Raynard van Tonder is a new addition to the Proteas Test squad and he comes incredibly highly rated.

He is just 22-years-old, but Knights batsman Raynard van Tonder has done enough to earn a maiden Proteas call-up and he is in the squad for two Tests against Sri Lanka. 
Not initially named in the squad of 14, Van Tonder’s inclusion came after Proteas management was forced into a rethink with a number of players exposed to the coronavirus, including two who have tested positive. 
Van Tonder, then, is rewarded for his superb form in the 4-Day Franchise Series this season where he tops the run scoring charts after five rounds of fixtures this season. 
Many South African cricket fans would not have seen Van Tonder play before, especially given that four-day first-class cricket has not been televised for years, so here are a few facts about a man who many in the inner circles of South African cricket believe could be a serious player for the national side in the years to come. 
10 Raynard van Tonder stats and facts
– Van Tonder is a Free Stater, through and through, having attended Grey College.
– He captained South Africa at the U-19 Cricket World Cup in 2018.
– South Africa were eliminated at the quarter-final stage of that tournament, but Van Tonder finished as his side’s highest run-scorer with 348 at an average of 69.60. 
– Van Tonder was subsequently named in the ICC Team of the Tournament as captain.
– Since making his first-class debut for Free State in 2016, Van Tonder has notched up 33 caps and averages 49.86 in the format. 
– It has been tougher going in List-A (limited overs) cricket, where Van Tonder averages just 24.19.  
– Van Tonder finished the 2019/20 4-Day Franchise series as the tournament’s leading run scorer with 843 at an average of 70.25.
– In the 2020/21 edition of the competition, he is leading the run-scoring charts once more with 604 at an average of 67.11. 
– In five matches this season, Van Tonder has gone big in Bloemfontein twice with knocks of 166 and 200 against the Dolphins and Lions, respectively. 
– Van Tonder bats primarily as a No 3 for the Knights, but he can play anywhere in the middle order. 
In an interview with Sport24 last month, Proteas white ball batsman and Knights stalwart Pite van Biljon was asked about his thoughts on Van Tonder and how far the youngster could go. 
Van Biljon was measured in his response, but it was clear how highly he rated his team-mate. 
“Obviously he is in my team so maybe I’m a bit biased, but I see the way this guy trains and the way he thinks and talks. You can’t say for sure that he’s going to be special or a great, because you don’t know that.
“But from what I see and the way he trains, I see a guy who is extremely motivated to be one of the best players in the world. We’re very lucky to have a player like that in our line-up at the Knights and I’m sure it won’t be long before he has a green jersey over his head.”
Pite van Biljon on Raynard van Tonder
The first Test against Sri Lanka gets underway on Boxing Day at Centurion. 
– Compiled by Sport24 staff