Quinny: one knock shy of elite club

2017-02-28 06:57
Quinton de Kock (Getty)

Cape Town – Another innings of at least a half-century by Quinton de Kock against New Zealand on Wednesday would probably go a long way to helping South Africa close out the ODI series with a game to spare.

But if he does post 50 or more in game four at Seddon Park in Hamilton (03:00, SA time) it will also take him personally out of one already distinguished - but packed - statistical club and into a much smaller, noticeably more elite one.

De Kock is on a run of five consecutive fifties in the format, which has him level-pegging with 25 other batsmen (including India’s Virat Kohli twice) for achievement of such consistency.

Among that swollen list are two South Africans - Jonty Rhodes, who got his five half-tons between November 2000 and January 2001, and Kepler Wessels.

The latter is an interesting case because the first of his knocks came in 1985 while representing Australia (against England at Edgbaston) and the next four some six years on, when representing South Africa, country of his birth, in the immediate post-isolation period.

He registered successive half-centuries in each of the historic first three ODIs on Indian soil in 1991 - at Kolkata, Gwalior and New Delhi - and then got another 81 not out in the equally unforgettable Sydney thrashing of the Aussies in South Africa’s maiden sampling of a World Cup match.

There is another SA-born player on the list, England’s Jonathan Trott.

But if De Kock can raise his bat for 50 at Seddon Park, he will have clicked over to a less claustrophobic group sporting six consecutive ODI half-centuries.

Currently only five players occupy that space: Gordon Greenidge (West Indies), Andrew Jones (New Zealand), Mark Waugh (Australia), Yousuf Youhana (Pakistan, later Mohammad Yousuf) and Kane Williamson, the Black Caps captain who will be trying to keep his side’s series challenge alive against the Proteas on Wednesday.

But even if the left-handed De Kock, who already averages a touch under 45 after 77 ODIs at the still pretty tender age of 24, does crank his run up to six half-tons, he would still have a way to go to elbow out the all-time record-holder.

That honour is the preserve of feisty Pakistani stroke-player Javed Miandad, who achieved an incredible nine fifties (including two centuries) in a row during a purple patch for him between March and October of 1987.

Here is a reminder of De Kock’s five ODI 50s in a row, from outset in early February:

55 v Sri Lanka, Cape Town

109 v Sri Lanka, Centurion

69 v New Zealand, Hamilton

57 v New Zealand, Christchurch

68 v New Zealand, Wellington

*Follow our chief writer on Twitter: @RobHouwing

Read more on:    proteas  |  quinton de kock  |  cricket


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