We’re going to have to rely on our seamers if we are to compete in the Test series against England.
I looked at the squad announcement and my first reaction was ‘what is going on?!’ Not seeing AB de Villiers in that squad, and with Faf du Plessis in doubt because of the birth of his child, leaves the side severely exposed against a side full of confidence and determined to win their first series against South Africa at home since 1998.
To expose Dean Elgar as captain for the match against England Lions and potentially the first match at Lord’s, doesn’t make me overly enthusiastic about our chances. Our batting isn’t too bad. Heino Kuhn is the form man to come in and Quinton de Kock at No 7 provides a lot of depth, but we’re still going to have to rely on our formidable pace attack of Kagiso Rabada, Vernon Philander and Morne Morkel.
Lord’s is a pitch that generally offers a lot of assistance for the seamers, but London has been very hot and humid lately, so they have to go with a spinner and let the three quicks do their thing. I’m not convinced by Maharaj as a big wicket-taker. He can hold an end, but he doesn’t offer much variation. I would have gone with Tabraiz Shamsi, who provides more of a wicket-taking threat.
I’m worried that they’re going to have to rely too much on the seamers, but we’ll just have to hope that they fire. There’s no reason why they won’t however; they’re in great form. If Maharaj doesn’t produce the goods, then they might have to look at Chris Morris coming in as an extra pace option.
I’m getting worried about the extent to which our players prioritise playing for their country. It’s farcical that AB isn’t playing all of the games, but it’s happening everywhere. The quality of West Indian cricket has gone downhill because the top players would rather earn big bucks on the domestic circuits, and now the Australians are starting to complain about the amount of money they’re earning. This never used to happen and the ICC are losing control of the longest format.
I thought the selections throughout the T20 series were shocking. Players were just thrown in left, right and centre. Experimenting with Morris at No 3 was deplorable, but it just went to show that they lacked decent alternatives to come in and score quick runs. Morris belongs at No 7, he shouldn’t have been messed around.
I understand that the players want to spend time with their families, but why is playing for your country not a priority? If you can play in an ODI series, then surely you can play in a T20 series too. It left us very depleted not having our best players in that series, and it happened in the Sri Lanka series too.
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