Following the ODI series whitewash over Australia, ANDRE HUISAMEN looks at the winners and losers from the series.
Arguably the player who grabbed his precious chance the best.
The 28-year-old had been circling outside of the Proteas setup for quite some time since breaking onto the scene back in 2018. With scores of 123*, 51 and 68* against Australia, Klaasen finally proved to be coming of age in this new Proteas middle-order.
Almost unchallenged, Klaasen was rewarded the Man of the Series award for his efforts and will be looking to kick on that form in the upcoming series against India.
Another 5️⃣0️⃣ for Klaasen |🇿🇦 242-4
There’s NO stopping this man 🚫
Klaasen has now notched his 2nd 50 half-century of the series
He has shown skill, grit & class throughout this series
— Cricket South Africa (@OfficialCSA) March 7, 2020
Kyle Verreynne and David Miller
Two more players, who had a significant impact on the new look batting unit were youngster Verreynne and the experienced Miller.
The duo looked to have made a remarkable impact on that new beat of the middle order. Verreynne made his debut in the first ODI in Paarl and managed scores of 48, 3 and 50, while Miller looked like the effortless talent of old by contributing 64, 37* and 3*.
What was most impressive about Miller is the role he played in the second ODI in Bloemfontein, when the inexperienced opener Janneman Malan needed some guidance and advice from his senior partner as the match entered its most critical phase.
Miller batted patiently for his 37 and waited for the right moments to strike against the Australians and in the end, helped South Africa to a comfortable victory with Malan getting to three figures.
He delivered a similar partnership with Klaasen in the first ODI, where he helped restore the innings to post a respectable total, which Australia failed to chase.
Verreynne, on the other hand, was a breath of fresh air in what has very much been a trial and error summer of cricket for Mark Boucher’s men. He looked confident and assured with the bat, while his fielding also added a much-needed boost to the squad.
Taking nothing away from how clinical the Proteas were in the series, one probably expected a bit more from the Australian side, especially after how good they were in the T20 series against the Proteas.
Mitchell Marsh was drafted back into the ODI setup to offer that all-rounder experience to the team but instead he barely made an impact with either bat or ball. He failed to pick up a wicket in all of the three matches and was on the expensive side as well with the Proteas batsmen certainly targeting him as an easy scoring option.
In total he only managed 73 runs across the series despite having decent opportunities and platforms to deliver with the bat.
Another Australian, who underperformed this series was the quick bowler. Usually quite an influential player in Australian matches,he had a quiet series by his standards. Cummins failed to make the important breakthroughs as he has done so often in the past, so much so that coach Justin Langer decided to give him a rest in the finale in Potch.
Similarly, Zampa wasn’t nearly as effective as he was in the T20 series. Australia’s main spin option in this format, Zampa was far from his economical best and did not do enough to create any scoreboard. Add that to a lack of wickets and it’s clear to see why the visitors struggled for a foothold in the series.
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