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Ken Borland

Post-Zimbabwe, pre-England SA cricket Q&A

Posted on July 03, 2012 by Ken

Maroof Gangat asked:
The Big 3, amla, kallis, de villiers. why is it that it has to be 1 of these 3 batsmen that bail SA out of trouble, im sure the other batsmen have to pull up there socks and come to the party eg. rudolph, du plessis etc.
Ken answered:
I think you’re being a little unfair. Obviously Amla, Kallis & De Villiers are 3 of the best batsmen in the world and they will obviously consistently produce great performances. But the rest of the batting order are consistently chipping in as well – Jacques Rudolph made a crucial century recently in NZ, Du Plessis top-scored in the final in Zimbabwe and has made valuable runs in the middle-order in ODIs. Smith, Petersen, Duminy have all made runs in the last year as well.

Riaan asked:
Hi Ken,
My question is regarding Parnell. I am just struggling to see why we keep investing in him. Understandably he has shown immense talent and therefore his prolonged was justified to an extent, but he has never made the international level his own. He I know he has performed well in the last T20, but the first two? I perceive him as very hot/cold. Your opinions on him being the constant inclusion that he is? Justified? For how long still?
Ken answered:
I think the problem when it comes to Parnell is that the talent is obviously there and the best way to nurture talent is to back it, give it opportunity, hope continuity of selection helps him to settle down. But yes, consistency is his problem. His place will definitely be under serious threat if the likes of Marchant de Lange or Rusty Theron start to produce the goods on a consistent basis.

Armand asked:
Hi Ken,Do u think we have got the right back up players in our squads if some of our star players get injured?? If u look at our bowlers and keeper?? I think we need some wicket taking bowlers and not stock bowlers..
Ken answered:
Hi Armand
Are you talking about the test squad?
In terms of the wicketkeeper, I am disappointed that Tsolekile has not been taken on tour as specialist back-up.
The back-up players are probably the best we have, though … we just need to do more work on them!
“Stock” bowlers are also important though because they dry up an end, build pressure and allow the more attacking bowlers to rotate from the other end.

Bennie asked:
Hi Ken, After our second defeat to Zim, do you think Amla is still the man to take charge should AB be unavailable in the limited overs games?
Ken answered:
Hi Bennie
I don’t think our losses to Zimbabwe were due to bad captaincy, we were beaten so thoroughly that I don’t think any tactics made the difference! But yes, I’m not entirely convinced with Amla as captain … but that being said, he was only standing-in for the T20s because Johan Botha was injured. The problem is, if not Amla, then who? Botha is no longer assured of his place in the limited-overs teams …

Tumelo asked:
Hi Ken,

1)Would Faf be ahead of Kallis in the opening slot after Amla and Levi?
2)If Kallis is not going to open is there a place for him in the middle ahead of Faf as I think the spinning option would be better suited to conditions
3)Who between Faf, Ontong and Ingram do you think will get the nod?
4)Would it be wise to play 3 seamers and Kallis in the sub-continent?

Ken answered:
Hi Tumelo
Nice questions!
I think Kallis is a definite, we saw his immense value in helping KKR to the IPL title. But I believe he must open the batting, probably with Levi. I also firmly believe AB, our best T20 batsman, must bat 3 and be fully utilised. Duminy then at four, I agree with you about Faf as a spin option as well, so I’d put him at five. Because AB will keep, we can have another specialist batsman as a floater – coming in anywhere between 3 & 6 – this could be Ingram or Ontong, Albie Morkel 7, Peterson/Botha 8, three pacemen – Steyn, M. Morkel, Tsotsobe (providing he bowls better than he did in Zim!). That leaves possible space in the squad for Amla as the reserve opener and one other fast bowler. Depending on just how spin-friendly the conditions are, we could play both Peterson & Botha, leaving out one paceman.

Wynand asked:
Do you think there is reason for worry regarding the depht of our squad after the recent tour of Zim?
Ken answered:
It did show that our depth is perhaps not as great as we think it is, but for me it was more apparent just how hard it is to make the step up from domestic to international cricket, especially when conditions are unfamiliar. The up-side is we now have far greater clarity in selection for the ICC World T20.

Dallas Nash asked:
Giving all those youngsters a chance was a nice gesture but so close to the England tour I really think the core squad members should have used the opportunity to get some match/team practice in. They really haven’t done much as a team all year and they’ll need to be on their toes. We want that No. 1 slot!
Ken answered:
I don’t think a T20 series on low, slow pitches would be any preparation at all for a test series in England! They’ll have a couple of warm-up games together in England, plus the core players who weren’t in Zim were working hard back in SA!

Jack asked:
England just played a series of ODIs and test matches vs West Indies and are now playing a 5 ODI series vs Australia. Is our only preparation for the test series going to be a T20 triangular vs Zim and Bangladesh? I”m hoping the players are going to get a lot of game time before the 19th.
Ken answered:
There will be two warm-up matches against Somerset & Kent, giving them 5 days of cricket before the 1st test … At least we’ll be focusing on test disciplines, why England will be involved in tough ODIs …

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