Using me as South Africa’s front-line spinner for the Test series against Bangladesh is probably not a good idea, says JP Duminy.
Duminy is seen as a part-time spinner in all forms of the game and acts as a back-up to whoever gets the nod as first-choice by the national selectors.
Imran Tahir is the first-choice for the ODI and T20 teams, but it seems as if the selectors have lost faith in his ability as a Test spinner, especially on wickets outside of South Africa, which means there is a vacancy for a front-line spinner in the Test team.
Simon Harmer and Aaron Phangiso are the preferred choices for the tour of Bangladesh, but they have played only one Test between them after Harmer made his debut against the West Indies in January.
Phangiso was previously regarded as a ODI specialist, but now finds himself in contention for the Test side, despite an extremely poor domestic record.
Dane Piedt is the other spinner in the picture, but he has only recently returned from a long injury lay-off and was not considered for the tour. He will, however, represent the South Africa A side on their tour of India next month.
Duminy said he had the potential to be the dominant spinner in the South African bowling attack, but believes it won’t be a wise decision to consider him as the front-line spinner for the Test team at the moment.
‘It is a process of building into the position of front-line spinner. It is about getting opportunities to bowl a lot more overs in games,’ the 30-year-old said.
While it is true that Duminy has improved considerably as a spinner over the last few seasons, it is doubtful he is good enough on a consistent basis to be the first-choice Test spinner, though South Africa would get away with it against a team like Bangladesh.
Harmer should have the inside lane as first-choice with Duminy serving as able back-up, but it will be interesting to see where Phangiso fits in.
He has no proven pedigree in domestic four-day cricket and failed to get a game at the World Cup in Australia and New Zealand.
If the selectors want to experiment with him to see what he offers, the series in Bangladesh is the place to do it.