Having ditched plans to qualify for England, David Bedingham says he wants to stake a claim for Proteas selection.
In January 2022, Bedingham’s agent confirmed that the Western Province batsman had begun the process of qualifying to play for England having not been contacted by anyone at Cricket South Africa regarding his future.
At the time, he was the leading run-scorer in the 2021-22 CSA 4-Day Domestic Series with 509 runs at an average of 63.62.
However, Bedingham – who represented Durham in the County Championship – will return to WP for the 2023-24 South African domestic season in a bid to be picked by the Proteas.
WATCH: Bedingham goes big for Durham again
“I’d qualify as a local here [England] in another two years but, by that stage, I’ll be 31 years old, and while I’d still have some time left, I think my best years are now,” Bedingham told the PA news agency.
“That’s why I’m committed to playing for South Africa. I’ve made up my mind – another two years just seems too late.
“If I am doing well and scoring runs and I can’t play for England or South Africa, that’s just a waste. I’m not sure if I’ll do well at that level – nobody can be sure – but I want to give myself that chance.
“You don’t want to be 33, looking back, wishing you’d given it a shot rather than waiting, waiting, waiting and finding your best years are gone.
“It’s about saying I gave it a shot. Just getting to that stage and seeing if I can handle the pressure, the glamour, the lights.”
WP also welcome back pace bowler Mthiwekhaya Nabe from the EP Warriors, while other new recruits include Juan James (North West Dragons), Valentine Kitime (Boland Rocks) and Onke Nyaku (Garden Route Badgers).
Western Province squad: Wayne Parnell, Kyle Verreynne, Beuran Hendricks, Tony de Zorzi, Jono Bird, Eddie Moore, Daniel Smith, George Linde, Kyle Simmonds, Yaseen Vallie, Mihlali Mpongwana, Dane Paterson, Nandre Burger, Onke Nyaku, Valentine Kitime, Mthiwekhaya Nabe, Juan James, David Bedingham.