Lance Klusener says Andile Phehlukwayo is the Proteas’ best all-rounder, but believes that playing him at No 7 is one position too high, writes KHALID MOHIDIN.
The World Cup squad was received quite well by the Proteas legend, who expectedly highlighted the bowling unit as South Africa’s biggest strength.
The ongoing debate would be which combinations suit the England conditions the best. One of the Proteas’ favourite strategies, leading up to the World Cup, was playing two all-rounders.
After trialling and testing all the all-rounders in contention – Dwaine Pretorius, Wiaan Mulder and Chris Morris – the Proteas settled on Pretorius as the second all-rounder in the World Cup squad, with 23-year-old Phehlukwayo trusted as the Proteas’ No 1.
According to Klusener, the Proteas are capable of playing the two all-rounders system, especially in England conditions.
‘I think they’re alright,’ Klusener told SA Cricket magazine when asked about the Proteas’ two all-rounders.
‘I think in England conditions they will be good enough. If anything, it would have been nice for one of them to bowl 140 km/h, which they don’t. But their batting is solid. All-rounders are the glue in your team. So if we can squeeze one or two into the team, that would be good.
‘I think their batting is good enough, but it would be nice to see a little more pace from them to complement the fast bowlers that we have. [Playing one or two all-rounders] depends on conditions. On a gloomy morning, on a grassy wicket, then two all-rounders are the way to go.
‘You can get conditions there where the wickets can be very flat with not too much swing, then you will need another bowler in there. I think you can get away with two all-rounders, because it can swing and nibble around a bit.
‘England has been famous in the past in their conditions to play ‘dibbly dobbly’ all-rounders who can bat a bit which can be very effective, that definitely works, especially in English conditions.
‘But taking wickets is something that we need to look at to stem the run rate. We have the bowlers up front who can take wickets up front, which is great.’
He also gave his insights about fellow Dolphins graduate Phehlukwayo, highlighting his talent.
‘Andile Phehlukwayo has been excellent at the death, so I don’t think there is any question who is the No 1 all-rounder there. It’s all about finding the balance for the other one, I guess.
‘No 7 for a guy like Andile is one [position] too many. It would be nice to have Miller at No 7, Andile at 8 and Pretorius at No 9, that would be deadly, but then you were always going to be short a bowler.’
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