Ashwell Prince has been dropped from the South African squad to play Sri Lanka in the third Test starting in Cape Town on Tuesday. Prince's absence makes it a certainty that recalled batsman Alviro Petersen will have a spot in the starting XI but it has yet to be decided whether Petersen will open or slot into Prince's role at No. 6.
Prince's place has been under scrutiny since the start of the season after he failed to score a half-century in either of South Africa's last two series, against Pakistan and India in 2010-11. He managed 109 runs in three Test matches this summer, including a half-century against Australia in Johannesburg in November, but failed to push on from there.
Prince paid the price for South Africa's spectacular implosion with the bat on the second day of the second Test against Sri Lanka in Durban, when they were bowled out for 168. Prince was dismissed for 11, the joint fifth-highest individual score on a dismal card, playing a reverse-sweep against Rangana Herath in the first innings. In the second knock, he was involved in a nightmare run-out, during which he turned his back on Hashim Amla, who called for a risky single, and it resulted in Amla's run-out. Prince was later dismissed for seven, a second failure in the match, after being moved up the order to No. 5.