JJ Smuts has played eight T20Is for South Africa. Getty

JJ Smuts has been ruled out of the T20I series in India after failing to meet the fitness standards, Cricket South Africa announced on Thursday (September 5). All-rounder George Linde, who is in India playing for South Africa A, will replace Smuts.

Linde scored an unbeaten half-century in the second one-dayer against India A after starting the five-match series with a duck. His 25-ball knock lifted South Africa A to a challenging score but they failed to win the contest. Linde has played 75 T20s so far and has 611 runs at a strike rate of 139.81. His bowling has been more effective. He's taken 77 wickets at a strike rate of 19.3.

Smuts last played a T20I in 2018 against India and has featured in eight games for South Africa. The visitors will start the series with the first T20I in Dharamsala on September 15. After the three-match series they will play three Tests from October 2.