Adelaide - Bowling with some of the world’s best fast bowlers has motivated Proteas all-rounder Andile Phehlukwayo to lift his game with the ball.
Phehlukwayo proved his wicket-taking potential with three for 33 in the first one-day international (ODI) against Australia in Perth last Sunday, which the Proteas won comfortably by six wickets.
The 22-year-old has a clever armoury of variations as one of his strengths and has taken 43 wickets with a career-best of four for 40 in the 34 matches he has played. He says bowling alongside the express pace and talent of Dale Steyn, Kagiso Rabada and Lungi Ngidi is the perfect learning opportunity as he continues to master his craft in limited-overs cricket.
“It is a massive privilege,” he said of bowling in tandem with the fast bowlers. “If you look around, there is Steyn, Rabada and Ngidi, you try and execute your skills to your best ability. They force you to be at the level they are at, that is a good thing in the team environment.
“In any seam attack, if any individual had to come and bowl with those guys they would learn a lot. They have a lot of experience, talent and a lot of skills up their sleeves. It is great to be bowling in tandem with those guys, I have learnt a lot from them.”
The Proteas camp is a happy group following the win on Sunday, and has re-grouped in Adelaide with a new set of goals and perspective ahead of the second ODI at the Adelaide Oval on Friday.
The possibility of a series win is not the main focus, but rather a determination to execute the basics and to continue raising the bar through preparation.
“We are confident,” Phehlukwayo said after the squad’s practice at the Adelaide Oval on Wednesday. “The guys have been working hard and have been doing extra at practice. As a team we pride ourselves on working hard and hopefully with the hard work, the results can take care of themselves.”