South African selection convenor Joubert Strydom admitted Wednesday there had been "a lot of discussion" before the announcement of a 14-man squad for a Test series in India.
The squad meets Cricket South Africa's target of six players of colour.
In two changes from the squad originally selected for a recent Test series in Bangladesh, two coloured players, fast bowler Charl Langeveldt and left-arm spin bowler Robin Peterson, replaced two white cricketers, Andre Nel and Johan Botha.
"There was a lot of discussion and toing-and-froing," said Strydom, although he did not comment directly on rumours that the squad had again been the subject of a tug-of-war between the selectors and Cricket SA president Norman Arendse.
The announcement last month of the team for Bangladesh, which only included four black players, was delayed by more than a week and eventually departed without the sanction of Arendse, who then won backing from Cricket SA's general council for a policy of six players of colour in a 14-man squad.
"Targets and transformation was one of the issues we were aware of when we took on the job as selectors," said Strydom. "It is a part of South African sport, as it is in politics and economics."
Strydom said he felt that the squad, which will play three Test matches in India, starting on March 26, would provide a stern challenge for the in-form Indians.
The two teams will be battling for the number two place in the International Cricket Council's Test rankings. India are currently second and South Africa fourth but there are only two points between them.
Strydom did not comment on individual selections but the two changes are unlikely to weaken the Test starting line-up. Although Nel was in the Test squad in Bangladesh he did not play in either Test.
Peterson took five for 33 in the second innings of the second Test after replacing off-spinner Botha, who played in the first Test.
Peterson joined the Bangladesh tour after first-choice spinner Paul Harris withdrew because of injury. Harris is back for the India series.
Strydom said he could not comment on reports that Nel was so angry that he had been dropped for the India tour that he initially threatened to withdraw from the second one-day international against Bangladesh in Dhaka Wednesday.
But he eventually played and took four for 27 to earn the man of the match award as South Africa won by seven wickets to clinch the series.
"I don't know whether that is true or not," said Strydom, "but I would have been disappointed in Andre if he had been happy that he had been dropped."
South Africa squad: Graeme Smith (captain), Ashwell Prince (vice-captain), Hashim Amla, Mark Boucher, AB de Villiers, JP Duminy, Paul Harris, Jacques Kallis, Charl Langeveldt, Neil McKenzie, Morne Morkel, Makhaya Ntini, Robin Peterson, Dale Steyn.