SA in West Indies

Coach Corrie backs Harris

2010-06-16 11:23
Corrie van Zyl (File)
Altus Momberg

Cape Town – Proteas coach Corrie van Zyl believes that Paul Harris’s bowling can still improve a lot in the two remaining Tests against the West Indies.

Van Zyl told Sport24 on Tuesday that he will work with Harris personally over the next few days in an attempt to solve a few technical problems in the spinner’s bowling action.

“Harris proved himself the best spinner in South African cricket over and over again in recent years and I don’t think he’ll be replaced,” said Van Zyl.

“We sent him with the SA 'A' side to Bangladesh to play some cricket, but I believe he will be even better in the coming Test. However, I believe there are a few technical things we can work on so that he can get more turn.”

Harris did not perform as well as the two Windies spinners - Shane Shillingford and Sulieman Benn - in the opening Test who together took 12 of the 14 Proteas wickets that fell.

In his defence, Harris, who took two wickets in the first Test, does perform a different role in the Proteas' bowling line-up. Opening bowlers Dale Steyn and Morné Morkel spearhead the attack, while in the Windies' attack, that role is reserved for their spinners.

However, it was noticeable that the home spinners got a lot more "help" from the pitch.

The Proteas landed at Basseterre in St Kitts on Tuesday where they will prepare for the second Test that starts at Warner Park on Friday.

Van Zyl was happy with his side’s performance in the first Test at Port of Spain which South Africa won by 163 runs.

“I believe we will improve in the second Test. Remember that most of the players played Twenty20 and one-day games over the last four months. As their bodies get used to Test cricket, they will only improve,” he said.

“When you consider how long ago we played Test cricket, it was a good performance. The batsmen can improve and a few of those 50s and 60s should have been centuries.

“I was impressed, however, with the manner in which we fought back after losing three wickets late on the first afternoon.”

Read more on:    corrie van zyl  |  paul harris  |  proteas

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