Antoinette Muller

SA’s catch-up cricket problem

2014-02-14 09:21
Sport24 columnist Antoinette Muller (File)
You don’t have to be an avid cricket watcher to notice that the South African cricket team tends to take a methodical approach to things. In their selections, they remain conservative and when it comes to starting a series, they tend to take a while to get out of the blocks.

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It’s a weird position to be. Sometimes South Africa sometimes come across as being conservative, -especially when it comes to squad selection. They stuck with what they knew for the series against Australia, justifying  it by saying this is no time for “left-field” selections. Parnell was perhaps somewhat of a surprise inclusion, but it soon became clear that he did have a little bit of an X-factor about him.   Not only does he offer a left-arm option to create a bit of extra rough for a player like JP Duminy, but he also has the ability to bowl proper gas. His control needs some work, but for short bursts, he’d have been handy.  Ryan McLaren, although a workhorse, doesn’t offer anything that the side doesn’t already have. Sure, he can bowl a lot of overs, but it doesn’t bring any different dynamic to the team.  McLaren feels safe. He’s familiar, he works hard, he thinks about the game, but he is nothing extraordinary. 

South Africa might yet again prove that they have the resilience to bounce back and thrive under the pressure of having their backs against the wall. But that doesn’t mean nobody should wonder why they aren’t so completely ruthless right from the get-go.

Antoinette Muller is a freelance writer who writes mainly about soccer and cricket for The Daily Maverick or anybody else who will have her...

Disclaimer: Sport24 encourages freedom of speech and the expression of diverse views. The views of columnists published on Sport24 are therefore their own and do not necessarily represent the views of Sport24.

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