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Ken Borland

Elgar set to make an emotional plea to IPL Proteas

Posted on April 08, 2022 by Ken

Proteas captain Dean Elgar is set to make an emotional plea to his IPL-bound team-mates to show their loyalty to South Africa and delay their departure to India so they can be available for both Tests against Bangladesh starting on March 31.

South Africa are currently fourth in the World Test Championship and two Tests at home against Bangladesh would normally be considered a prime opportunity to make further advances up the standings.

But the IPL starts on March 26 and the likes of Kagiso Rabada, Anrich Nortje, Lungi Ngidi, Marco Jansen, Aiden Markram and Rassie van der Dussen all have lucrative deals with Indian franchises. Elgar made it clear on Friday that he really wants them to be available for the Bangladesh Tests at Kingsmead and St George’s Park.

“The IPL is a headache and this morning CSA said the players need to give an indication whether they want to play for South Africa or go to the IPL,” Elgar said. “It’s a tough one to put in the players’ hands.

“So this will be the test of where their loyalty lies. I will be phoning them and reminding them that they got to the IPL because of their performances for the Proteas. I will be asking them not to forget where they came from.

“I wish I knew more about who will be available and who will not because most of my bowlers could potentially not be there for the Bangladesh Tests.

“Conditions are probably going to be more suited to the opposition on the coast and we’re not going to have our A side when I would like everyone at our disposal. It’s a tough one for me,” Elgar said.

Although the Proteas seem to have discovered their Test cricket mojo over the last nine months, Elgar stressed that Bangladesh cannot be underestimated, or else there could be a repeat of Sri Lanka’s notorious breakthrough triumph at the same venues in 2018/19.

About the only positive for the Proteas would be the chance the IPL players’ absence would provide for talents like Ryan Rickelton or Glenton Stuurman to get exposure at Test level.

“We need our best side because we can by no means be disrespectful to Bangladesh,” Elgar said. “On their day they can really give us a headache, as seen recently in their win in New Zealand.

“The talent pool and ability is there for them. I don’t want our players to miss out on the IPL, but I hope playing for the country is bigger for them. They all play a massive role in the team.

“We already play so little Test cricket so we can’t not have our best players available when we do play. I’m in for an interesting few days, no doubt,” Elgar said.

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