T20 Challenge

Shamsi knocking on Proteas door

2017-12-14 16:07
Tabraiz Shamsi (Gallo Images)

Cape Town - Tabraiz Shamsi's performance in the RAM SLAM T20 Challenge this year has reminded the national selectors of his capabilities.

With the Warriors looking good for a competitive total in their semi-final clash against the Titans in Centurion on Thursday night, a deathly spell of bowling from the 27-year-old wrist spinner halted that charge. 

Shamsi dismissed the dangerous Colin Ackermann, Christiaan Jonker, Gihahn Cloete and Jerry Nqolo to finish with figures of 4/32 from his four overs in what was a match-winning spell of bowling. 

That return also means that Shamsi now stands alone as the leading wicket-take in this year's competition. 

After 10 matches, Shamsi has now picked up 16 wickets at an average of 13.68 and an economy rate of 7.06

Those may not seem like earth-shattering numbers, but going at just over 7 to the over is a good effort for a spin bowler in this format of the game. 

Imran Tahir, meanwhile, has 6 wickets at an average of 22.5 and an economy rate of 7.5

Shamsi hasn't been as destructive this season as he was on Thursday night, but his performances have been consistent and they will surely throw him back into the Proteas selection mix heading into the new year. 

It may not come on the Test stage where Keshav Maharaj is making the spinning position his own, but Shamsi looks a bowler who is ready to challenge Tahir for a place in both the ODI and T20I set-ups. 

Tahir has the pedigree, but he is also 38-years-old and will be 40 by the time the next World Cup comes around. 

That is not to say that Tahir doesn't have the physical ability to play for another couple of years, but the Proteas brains trust does need to start thinking about the future. 

Shamsi has played in just five ODIs since making his debut almost a year and a half ago.

If he is a player who the selectors feel has an international future, then he needs to be given more than that in 2018.

In the meantime, all Shamsi can do is keep performing for the Titans, and guiding them to a title this weekend certainly won't hurt his cause. 

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