Cape Town - The Proteas are considering handing a Test debut to Dane Paterson for Thursday's third Test against England in Port Elizabeth.
That was confirmed by skipper Faf du Plessis at his pre-match press conference on Wednesday.
The 30-year-old Cape Cobras seamer has played in four ODIs and eight T20s for South Africa but was included in the squad for the England Tests after an extended run of form in the 4-Day Franchise Series.
Du Plessis confirmed that, at this stage, Paterson's inclusion was far from confirmed and was merely an option being discussed.
The skipper is expecting there to be some reverse swing on offer as the Test progresses, and that could make Paterson a more attractive option than allrounder Dwaine Pretorius, who played in the first two Tests of the series.
Du Plessis also hinted that he could consider going in without a specialist spinner in Keshav Maharaj, but that seems highly unlikely.
The other option would be to leave one of Anrich Nortje or Vernon Philander out.
"We're considering the possibility of maybe looking at someone like Patto, but we haven't decided on that yet," Du Plessis said.
"Obviously, for who would be a big question that we need to answer and we'll do that this afternoon to see who it would be for, if he does come in.
"It's not an easy decision and it's something we're just talking about at this stage.
"It's about looking at the conditions and what we need to, firstly, get 20 wickets.
"It's something that myself, Bouch and Kallis have spoken a lot about and we will continue to discuss it."
Play on Thursday gets underway at 10:00 and the series is tied at 1-1.