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India Tour of South Africa: Five Takeaways

India Tour of South Africa: Five Takeaways. Ongama Gcwabe and Bet Central highlight Five Takeaways from the tour.  

India South Africa Tour Takeaways

The South Africa – India tour has concluded with the visitors managing only one victory in six matches played in the tour while the Proteas registered a 2-1 Test series victory and 3-0 ODI series whitewash. Ongama Gcwabe and Bet Central highlight Five positive Takeaways from the tour. 

Quinton De Kock Back With A Bang

Quinny has had another successful ODI series winning two man-of-the-match awards in a three-match series and a man-of-the-series award. It is still early to be suggesting that his Test retirement played any role in his return to form in ODI cricket, but he looked like the Quinny of old; calm, free-flowing and expressive. He looked in an incredible state of mind this series. His 229 runs came at an average of 76 and included one century and a fifty.  

De Kock has proven again to any doubters that he is still the go-to guy for South Africa’s white-ball teams despite his unexpected retirement from Test cricket. At the top of the order, especially now that he opens with an experienced rising star in Janneman Malan, De Kock is a crucial figure in the team and is key for South Africa’s hopes of World Cup glory next year.

 

Janneman Malan Continues to Impress

Only a few have had a first year of international cricket as Malan has had for the Proteas, particularly ODI cricket. The 25-year-old batter received the ICC Emerging Cricketer of The Year award for his performances in 2021 and is the first South African men’s cricketer to receive the award. His 715 runs in 17 international matches in 2021 got him the award.  

In this series, Malan showed his class, flair and sheer talent when he made 91 runs in the second match and propelled the Proteas to a series victory in Boland Park with one match to spare. Malan has made a name for himself relatively quickly and will be instrumental for the Proteas in years to come.  

Talent in South Africa

The past two to three years have been tough for South African Cricket. The country’s cricket community was questioning the standard of our domestic cricket and cricketers due to the appalling results the national team was producing. But this India tour has gotten us to an understanding that we have the talent to take us to greater heights in World Cricket. 

Marco Jansen had only played 18 First-Class games before making his Test debut in Centurion on Boxing Day and most of those games were in semi-pro level, not even Franchise level. But the way he came on to the Test scene showed us how strong our local cricketers are and how competitive our domestic structures are. Sisanda Magala is an exceptional talent as well that will go on to be a big impact player for the Proteas. Yes, he did not start well in the second ODI, but we all know the quality he will bring once he settles down and grows in confidence in international cricket.  

Keegan Petersen is another player that has a lot of experience in our domestic structures and the way he has shone in international cricket shows the level of talent we have at our disposal. South Africa really needed the India tour to remind us of our strengths in a time when we were focusing on the negatives we have around our structures. 

We are World Cup Ready

The T20 World Cup is drawing nearer, and our confidence is growing stronger. During the last World Cup in the UAE & Oman, the Proteas ticked a lot of boxes in terms of roles of players, style of play and most importantly in terms of player combinations in different conditions. From the top of the order down to the tailender, we have a group of players that have played alongside each other in both domestic and international cricket for a respectable amount of time, and that shows in how we play, and it shows in the understanding the players have about each other’s games and roles within the team.  

The ODI team has also grown in leaps and bounds. Having beaten Sri Lanka 2-1 in their own backyard, the Proteas returned even better results at home against a formidable India side that had the likes of Virat Kohli, KL Rahul and Jasprit Bumrah. The 3-0 series whitewash of India is an indication of maturity in the team and what’s to come from this group of players in the near future. Next year’s 50-over World Cup will be staged in India and the fact that we have beaten them in slow,  spinner-friendly conditions in this ODI series is a confidence boost.

Transformation of the Team

South African sport has come a long way in terms of transformation; there has been resistance, but we have taken a step in the right direction with the appointment of Temba Bavuma as captain of the white-ball teams. His response to the role has opened the eyes of many people around the world as he led South Africa to a 3-0 series win over the giants of World Cricket.  

Throughout this tour, players of colour stood out and made their presence felt; from Lungi Ngidi’s six-for in centurion, Bavuma’s consistency in the Test series to Keegan Petersen’s brilliance with the bat. Gone are the days when players of colour are given opportunities without any role whatsoever.  It has been refreshing seeing our national team take transformation to heart. This is one of the biggest improvements that this tour has highlighted.

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