SA spin bowling 'in good shape'

2016-05-21 10:43
Aaron Phangiso (Gallo Images)

Cape Town - Proteas spin bowling coach, Claude Henderson, is excited about the future and the current state of the spin bowling resources in South Africa.  

Henderson is part of the Cricket South Africa spinners camp being held in Mumbai from May 14 to 21, where South Africa’s elite and emerging spinners and batsmen are being put through an intensive programme on the art of spin. 

"We had a great mix of experience and youth at this year’s camp," Henderson said in Mumbai on Saturday.

"South Africa has been here (India) a few times and it has been quite challenging. From a bowling point of view it’s about understanding the conditions and also trying to learn from the locals on how to play in the shorter and longer format.

"From the batting point of view it’s the same message, it’s about figuring out how we cope with the pressure and how we go about building an innings.

"For the more experienced cricketer you will take it to the next level and talk about variations, changing of pace and exposing the batsman’s weaknesses.

"With the younger guys who have never been to India and are just starting out their careers we focus on technique and getting them to understand the game of cricket."

"Our players get to understand the conditions and learn while doing that. In my days we never had this opportunity so I feel this will benefit these players’ careers immensely going forward.

"We have a great group of spinners in the Proteas setup and in the high performance setup, our spin bowling is in good shape." 

The Proteas have selected three frontline spinners in Imran Tahir, Aaron Phangiso and debutant Tabraiz Shamsi for the upcoming tour of the West Indies, an encouraging indication of the strength of spin reserves coming through the pipeline.

Promising Dolphins left-arm spinner, Keshav Maharaj, says the camp has given him valuable know-how on how to succeed on the sub-continent.  

"It has been a great experience," Maharaj said.

"I’ve come here to work on a few things and a few aspects of my game, especially in the batting department. I’ve gained a lot of knowledge and experience of how to go about certain aspects of my game in these conditions and thanks to the high quality coaches who have helped me. 

"We are not exposed to such extreme wickets with turn and low bounce often back home, even the humidity is a factor, so it’s great to come here and to challenge yourself in circumstances that you wouldn’t normally play under." 

Proteas batsman, Temba Bavuma, believes his experience in India will benefit his game going forward, particularly the skills he has harnessed over the course of the week. 

"I have been on a number of these camps and every time I learn something new and different to help my game," Bavuma explained.

"We don’t often get an opportunity to work on technical aspects of our games during the season so it has been a valuable week working on my skills against spin and tapping into the knowledgeable coaches who have been assisting us.

"Playing in India comes with certain unique challenges and taking part in  these types of camps gives you a better understanding of what is expected of you when you play in the sub-continent." 

The High Performance programme is being attended by the following players: Bjorn Fortuin (bizhub Highveld Lions), Simon Harmer (Warriors), George Linde (Cape Cobras), Keshav Maharaj (Sunfoil Dolphins), Tshepo Ntuli (VKB Knights), Aaron Phangiso (bizhub Highveld Lions), Dane Piedt (Cape Cobras), Prenelan Subrayen (Sunfoil Dolphins) Temba Bavuma (bizhub Highveld Lions), Reeza Hendricks (The Unlimited Titans), Smangaliso Nhlebela (KZN Inland), Hector Ngobeni ( Limpopo), Stiaan van Zyl (Cape Cobras), Dane Vilas (Cape Cobras).

Coaches: Claude Henderson and HD Ackerman.


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