Heino Kuhn is delighted to finally get the chance to play for the Proteas in the Test arena.
Kuhn plans to keep the same mindset and approach that has brought him success for the upcoming four-match Test series against England, starting next week.
Kuhn’s debut Test call-up comes on the back of two successful seasons for the Titans, and more recently for South Africa A against the England Lions, where he finished as the standout performer in a disappointing series.
Kuhn is under no illusion about the challenges of opening in the UK, but hopes the experience of 133 first-class caps – with an impressive average of 44.71 – will be an advantage he can use towards further success. He has waited a long time for the call-up, but in the process has scored nearly 10 000 runs, with a high score of 244 not out, establishing himself as a franchise veteran.
‘Rather late than never,’ the 33-year-old said of his selection in Worcester on Tuesday. ‘I have matured a lot over the years as a batter and as a cricketer. I believe everything happens for a reason, and maybe five years ago wasn’t my time. I’m happy to be here and I’m looking forward to this challenge.
‘I’m going to try and approach it like I do with every game,’ he explained. ‘I know there is going to be a bit more pressure, especially if I make my debut, but it will be important to see it like it’s any other game.
‘Opening the batting everywhere is quite tough, but it is a lot more challenging in South Africa and England. My job is to take the newness off the ball, I’ll have to try and lead as well as I can, know where my off-stump is and take it from there.’
The Test squad began their preparation for the three-day warm-up match against England Lions with a light training session at New Road in Worcester on Tuesday. The match, which starts on Thursday, will carry first-class status.
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