CSA must be more open if they want to avoid the media speculating on the selection policies.
The selectors have chosen a strong squad. They’re all deserving of their places and it’s a chance for the same group of players to move on from the England series at the beginning of the year and show that they deserve to be there. Wayne Parnell is the only ‘new’ face in the squad, and he’s justified his selection with some standout performances for the Cape Cobras last season.
The selectors and coach must feel that Faf du Plessis is an important member of the team despite being dropped from that last Test at Centurion. I’m not saying it was a right or wrong decision to make him stand-in captain, but the coach obviously feels that there are only two players capable of captaining the Proteas, and that is Faf and AB. They could have gone a number of ways. They could have asked Hashim Amla to step in for those two matches, or they could have identified a future captain and it could have been used as an introduction into leadership. But ultimately it’s the coach’s decision, and Faf will be able to use his experience as captain of the T20 side.
The A side has served the likes of Stiaan van Zyl well and has gone a long way towards his selection for the Test squad. The A side is very important for players to get the right preparation as well as play at that standard against A teams from Australia and England (not Zimbabwe!). The Gauteng amateur team could beat Zimbabwe A, so we can’t read too much into that series. That was just a series to keep the administration side of things happy. Van Zyl has shown that he is a quality player and capable of doing well at international level in the future. His performances recently have shown he is on the way up and he’s found his confidence again in the middle order.
Now on to the not-so-positive stuff. I don’t want to speculate about the targets being set by CSA with regards to selection, but it all seems to be up in the air at the moment, and I feel CSA must be more open and honest with the media and the supporters. We will have to wait and see what exactly the team is going to be when they announce it, but I’m not concerned by that – the Proteas can field a very strong team with each player in that squad deserving of his place.
It seems, though, that a variety of issues are up in the air at the moment, and that includes the selection policy, the domestic match-fixing scandal etc. If CSA were more open and honest with the media and supporters, it will stop speculations about certain issues in cricket. Sometimes it’s better to get the facts out there instead of not making any comment which might leave the door open for rumours and speculation.
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