CSA convenor of selectors Victor Mpitsang says it’s “impossible to ignore” what Dewald Brevis has achieved so far in his short career.
The 19-year-old began his SA20 campaign for MI Cape Town on Tuesday with an unbeaten 70 off 41 balls against the Paarl Royals that included five sixes and four fours.
In October last year, Brevis blasted 162 off 57 balls (13 sixes, 13 fours) for the Northerns Titans in a T20 Challenge match against the Free State Knights.
Performances like these raise the question of when the former SA U19 star – who also played in last year’s IPL and CPL – can expect a senior Proteas call-up.
South Africa’s next T20I assignment is a three-match home series against the West Indies from 25-28 March.
“It’s impossible to ignore what he has done,” Mpitsang told News24 when asked about Brevis on Wednesday. “When somebody goes to an U19 World Cup and performs the way he did [scoring a record 506 runs in six innings], to ignore their performances would not be right.
“One thing about him is that, at a young age, he has been exposed to big competitions, which is very good for his growth. He started the IPL nicely with a few good innings, but he is also 19, and he will still grow.
“What I’ve really enjoyed about him this year is that his graph is growing in the right direction. He is a guy that we have identified and spoken about, and the one thing we did say is that we would like him to just play cricket, and that is what he is doing.”
Brevis has expressed his desire to play Test cricket, which he regards as the pinnacle of the game. That excites Mpitsang, who says the timing of Brevis’ international debut will also depend on the new Proteas Test and white-ball head coaches.
“Where does he fit in? Where would he bat in red-ball cricket? It’s easier for us as selectors to pick players, but it also comes down to the philosophy of the next coach and the style he plays. It all interlinks.
“It depends on where you see him fit in, and the coach will have an influence in that.
“He’s not 20 yet, and so much has happened for him in the last year since the U19 World Cup. He has received so much exposure, and he has performed.
“His time will come.”