Cape Town - South Africa under-19s head
coach Lawrence Mahatlane is content with the gradual improvement he saw from
the players throughout their near month-long tour of Trivandrum in India.
youngsters played in two Youth Test matches and four Quadrangular One-Day
Internationals (ODI) against India under-19s, India 'B' and Afghanistan between February 16 and March 12.
impressed with the way the players developed after each match, considering the
demanding conditions they were faced with in the subcontinent. Despite the
results early in the tour, he saw a lot of positives emanating from the 26 days
"It's been another interesting
tour with the under-19s, touring to the subcontinent is never easy, especially
at this time of year where it's their end-of-season," the coach said.
thought the boys got better and better with time, once they started adapting
and adjusting to the conditions and what was required."
Following a disappointing two-nil
series defeat in the longer format and a loss in the first ODI against India
U19s, South Africa bounced back with an impressive display in a match narrowly
lost by a single run to India 'B' before claiming two convincing victories
against Afghanistan. The consecutive wins against their fellow visitors helped
seal third-place in the quadrangular series.
Mahatlane sees the tour in its
entirety and some of the substandard results as a platform for the players to
learn and grow as cricketers. With more than half of the current squad eligible
for the upcoming U19 tours and next year's ICC U19 Cricket World Cup, he
believes that this experience will benefit the team in the future.
"A couple of tough lessons were
learnt," Mahatlane admitted. "The key for me is to see these lessons taken on
board and see growth taking place throughout their careers. We were completely
outplayed in the Test series. We had an opportunity against India B, the
eventual champions, and then beat Afghanistan in the two matches, so there were
a lot of good things.
"There are nine guys who are
still available for the under-19s," he continued. "There's a tour coming up in
three months and we’ll see those lessons learnt here, stand the team in good
stead as we go forward."
Although the overall results did
not go South Africa's way, Mahatlane was pleased by a few of the quality
individual showings within the squad.
Bryce Parsons grabbed a fine
six-wicket haul and a half-century in the first Youth Test. Andile Mogakane
ended the quadrangular series as the leading run-scorer with 140 runs,
including a high score of 64 and an average of 35. Marco Jansen walked away as
the top wicket-taker with eight wickets at 6.62, including two four-wicket
hauls in the two matches he played in.
"There were a lot of good
performances from individuals and that for me is the most exciting thing, to
see the growth of different players. In our six games, we had three 'player of
the matches' and we could have easily had more. So, I am very excited about
what the future holds," Mahatlane concluded.