for quality writing

Ken Borland



De Bruyn now selected as middle-order batsman – Zondi 0

Posted on May 04, 2017 by Ken

 

Theunis de Bruyn was only selected as a Test opening batsman as a once-off and will be batting in the middle-order for the SA A side, convenor of selectors Linda Zondi confirmed on Wednesday.

De Bruyn made his Test debut in South Africa’s last outing, the third Test against New Zealand in Hamilton, selected out of position as an opener and was dismissed for a three-ball duck in the first innings and run out comically for 12 in the second innings.

The 24-year-old was chosen ahead of specialist opener Stephen Cook, who had scored three centuries in his first nine Tests but only made 17 runs in four innings in New Zealand, painting the selectors into a corner when it comes to the next Test, against England at Lord’s from July 6, because no player should be dropped after just one game.

“As selectors we want to look after every single player and it is unfair to leave someone out after one game. But the decision to play Theunis was because we only had one back-up batsman in New Zealand and we gave him an opportunity. Opening the batting is not the long-term plan for him, not even for SA A.

“The decision to open with Theunis in Hamilton was just because he was the back-up batsman. He will now play in the middle-order. Aiden Markram is someone we would like to see open for SA A, as well as someone like Heino Kuhn. Aiden has done very well and if you’re playing for SA A then you’re good enough to play for the Proteas.

“It will be like a trial, but because of how well he’s done, I’m sure he’s very confident and we have named him captain because we know from his SA U19 days that he does have leadership qualities. We don’t shy away from making calls like that,” Zondi said.

The SA A four-day squad includes Dale Steyn, the great fast bowler who is building his way back to full fitness after serious shoulder surgery.

“Dale is very much on track with his recovery and the plan is for him to bowl flat out in one month’s time and hopefully he can make himself eligible for two of the three SA A four-day games in the UK,” Proteas doctor and team manager Mohammed Moosajee said.

The four-day games will also be vital for Markram and De Bruyn as they look to build on their stellar summers and force their way into the Test team for the series against England, while Temba Bavuma will also want to accumulate confidence-building runs ahead of the Tests.

Squads

SA A 50-over squad: Aiden Markram, Jon-Jon Smuts, Theunis de Bruyn, Temba Bavuma, Khaya Zondo (captain), Dwaine Pretorius, Mangaliso Mosehle, Sisanda Magala, Tabraiz Shamsi, Junior Dala, Lungi Ngidi, Dane Paterson, Reeza Hendricks, Heino Kuhn, Duanne Olivier.

SA A four-day squad: Heino Kuhn, Aiden Markram (captain), Theunis de Bruyn, Temba Bavuma, Khaya Zondo, Heinrich Klaasen, Jason Smith, Dwaine Pretorius, Dane Piedt, Duanne Olivier, Lungi Ngidi, Dane Paterson, Beuran Hendricks, Rudi Second, Junior Dala, Dale Steyn.

SA A itinerary

Sat 27 May                    1-day v County                                       Headingley, Leeds

Mon 29 May                1-day v County                                       The 3aaa County Ground, Derby

Thu 1 June                    1st A ODI v England Lions                      Trent Bridge, Nottingham

Sat 3 June                     2nd A ODI v England Lions                     Northampton

Mon 5 June                  3rd A ODI v England Lions (D/N)          Northampton

8-11 June                      4-day v Hampshire                                 Ageas Bowl, Southampton

14-17 June                   4-day v Sussex                                        Arundel (v Duke of Norfolk XI if Sussex in RL play-offs)

21-24 June                   ‘A’ Test v Lions                                        The Spitfire Ground, St Lawrence, Canterbury

 

Lack of opportunity for middle-order soured Zim successes – Smith 0

Posted on September 18, 2014 by Ken

Former captain Graeme Smith is highly impressed by the recent performances of the South African one-day side, but believes the success in the Zimbabwe triangular series was soured by the lack of opportunity given to the middle-order.

JP Duminy scored 51 in one innings but only managed another 51 runs in his other four innings, two of which were undefeated.

David Miller could only score 13 runs in three brief innings, Ryan McLaren batted twice for 30 runs and Rilee Rossouw also only batted twice, scoring a duck and 36.

“They’ve really done well and for me winning in Sri Lanka was the big one. Zimbabwe was great for their confidence. Australia were a bit undercooked, but there was needle in those games and it’s always lekker to beat them. We’re beating them more than ever before, here, over there and in other places.

“Our top five can really win games and set a platform, but I worry a bit about our middle-order. It’s a really difficult place to bat in and I think we need to give more opportunity to those guys, get them batting up the order in warm-up games or the softer matches. They must get batting, that will get them confidence and it will change the whole dynamic of the side,” Smith told The Pretoria News.

Smith said he felt particularly sorry for Miller, who either came in to bat with very few deliveries remaining or with the top-order having fallen cheaply.

“We know his ability and I think he should have been pushed up the order against Zimbabwe. That’s what should happen in the softer games. A guy like him needs both clarity in terms of his role and confidence,” South Africa’s captain in a record 149 ODIs said.

Smith also backed leg-spinner Imran Tahir as the man who will probably be the first-choice spinner for the World Cup early next year in Australia and New Zealand.

“I think Imran is a terrific short-form bowler, he picks up wickets and he’s difficult to attack because he turns the ball both ways. A finger spinner, if he doesn’t get big turn, can be lined up and go for 50 or 60 runs without the batsmen taking any risks. The smaller boundaries in New Zealand mean you probably won’t play two specialist spinners there, especially since JP Duminy is basically a frontline bowler now.

“Imran is the sort of bowler who can create things, he’s a partnership breaker and he takes pressure off the seamers. If you don’t have a spinner taking wickets then the seamers can be over-bowled and then they’re tired at the death,” Smith said.

The recently-retired left-hander said the need for wicket-taking bowlers remained a strong conviction of his.

“You need impact bowlers, both spinners and pacemen. In one-day cricket, if you can have game-changers with the ball then it makes a big difference.”

Smith also said the role of the selectors was crucial in getting the balance of the side right for the World Cup.

“A lot of the time, the balance of the side is about gut feel. But the selectors need to create consistency in the build-up to the World Cup. Those last two or three places in the squad are also crucial and the management have to have confidence in them if they decide to play the extra batsman or extra bowler. You don’t want things to suddenly start changing once you’re at the World Cup,” Smith warned.

“But we’ll obviously feel more at home in the conditions in New Zealand and Australia. Eighty percent of the time now you play in sub-continental conditions, but this World Cup will suit our style of play. Spinners will still be effective because the boundaries are big, so rotating the strike is key,” Smith said.

The 33-year-old is now a full-time employee of major cricket sponsors Momentum, marking the start of his business career and confirming that he has turned down the approaches of the Big Bash in Australia and of his own Cape Cobras side to play in the Champions League.

“My relationship with Momentum started back in 2003 and it’s a great place to start my business life. I’ll also be doing work with Cricket South Africa on the cultural identity of the Proteas, which is something very close to my heart, as well as some leadership consulting, public speaking, that sort of thing. So I won’t be going to the Big Bash to play for Perth Scorchers or to the Champions League with the Cobras,” Smith confirmed.

  • Recent Posts

  • Archives

  • Thought of the Day

    1 Corinthians 3:3 - "For while there is jealousy and strife among you, are you not of the flesh and behaving only in a human way?"

    One of my favourite U2 songs is a collaboration with Johnny Cash called The Wanderer, and it features the line "they say they want the kingdom, but they don't want God in it".
    Many people say they believe in God, but they don't experience his loving presence. They may be active in Christian work, but only if they have their way. If they cannot be leaders, they refuse to be involved.
    Because they refuse to allow God to fill their lives with his love, they remain weak and powerless.
    Spiritual maturity means developing a greater love for others.

    "When the love of Christ saturates you, immature attitudes such as pettiness, jealousy and strife are dissolved.
    "It is only when you have an intimate relationship with the Lord that you receive sufficient grace to rise above this immaturity and enjoy the solid food that the Holy Spirit gives you." - Solly Ozrovech, A Shelter From The Storm



↑ Top