SACricketmag.com picks the Proteas T20I team of the decade.
1. Hashim Amla (2011-18; matches: 39; runs: 1,106; average: 32.52)
Close, but no: Reeza Hendricks
- Critics questioned his ability to morph into a T20I batsman, but he did exactly that to be the orthodox half of his partnership with De Kock at the top of the order.
2. Quinton de Kock, wicketkeeper (2012-19; matches: 38; runs: 1,018; average: 30.84, catches: 36; stumpings: 10)
Close, but no: Morne van Wyk
- When De Villiers started handing over the wicketkeeping duties in T20I cricket, De Kock was quickly the natural choice to be behind the stumps and bat up the order.
3. AB de Villiers (2010-17; matches: 55; runs: 1,276; average: 27.14)
Close, but no: Jacques Kallis
- He might feature in the T20I team of the next decade, if recent talks with Du Plessis are to be believed …
4. Faf du Plessis, captain (2012-19; matches: 41; runs: 1,301; average: 37.17)
Close, but no: Farhaan Behardien
- Du Plessis has been a permanent fixture in the Test, ODI and T20I XI for a long time. His captaincy of the team for the shortest format, though, is nearing its end. De Kock is being groomed.
5. David Miller (2010-19; matches: 69; runs: 1,268; average: 30.19)
Close, but no: Rilee Rossouw
- Miller has blown hot and cold in ODI cricket for a while, but he’s carved enough of a need for him in T20Is. He’s one of three left-handers in this top six.
6. JP Duminy (2010-19; matches: 63; runs: 1,562; average: 43.38)
Close, but no: Justin Ontong
- Duminy has plenty of detractors. But there is no denying the numbers – he was the Proteas’ leading T20I run-scorer this decade.
7. Albie Morkel (2010-15; matches: 26; runs: 211; batting average: 17.58; wickets: 11; bowling average: 37.72)
Close, but no: Andile Phehlukwayo
- Morkel didn’t quite live up to his potential, but put in a big performance often enough to have him down as one of the decade’s better Proteas T20I all-rounders.
8. Chris Morris (2012-19; matches: 23; wickets: 34; bowling average: 20.50; runs: 133; batting average: 14.77)
Close, but no: Wayne Parnell
- Morris has juggled a Proteas T20I career and stints in the Indian Premier League and Australia’s Big Bash League well. He’s adored abroad, but not so much at home.
9. Dale Steyn (2010-19; matches: 30; wickets: 38; average: 18.65)
Close, but no: Kagiso Rabada
- Steyn was the country’s second-highest wicket-taker in this format this decade, and will continue to fight for a berth in the squad for the 2020 T20 World Cup.
10. Morne Morkel (2010-17; matches: 32; wickets: 33; average: 26.81)
Close, but no: Kyle Abbott
- Morkel’s economy rate was expensive on occasion, but importantly he had a knack for making breakthroughs when really needed at the start or end of T20I innings.
11. Imran Tahir (2013-19; matches: 35; wickets: 61; average: 14.08)
Close, but no: Aaron Phangiso
- Tahir averaged almost two wickets per T20I this decade. That sort of match aggregate is near unheard of.
Photo: Gallo Images