The Proteas are set to play their first international match since March against England next week to start the summer season. ANDRE HUISAMEN highlights three players to watch in the T20I and ODI series.
The star batsman will have the opportunity to cement his place alongside Quinton de Kock as the new Proteas ODI opening partnership. With Temba Bavuma expected to open in the T20 format, Malan will be eager to build on his impressive start in the 50-over format after his star performance against Australia earlier this year. Mark Boucher could face a selection headache with the return of Faf du Plessis, who didn’t feature against the Aussies in that series whitewash, but Malan’s talent and determination have been hugely welcomed by the Proteas, who have yet to find a replacement for Hashim Amla. Against a strong England bowling attack, the right-hander will have a golden opportunity to continue with his strong start in the ODI team.
Linde was unfortunate to miss out on a limited-overs debut against India in March when the Proteas tour to the subcontinent was cancelled due to Covid-19. The 28-year-old is one of three left-arm spinners in the Proteas extended squad for the two series against England, which largely suggest that Boucher and his coaching staff will continue their experimental cause of determining the best Proteas T20 and ODI teams. Nonetheless, Linde could have a great influence with ball in hand and has the capabilities to turning cricket matches.
Sipamla enjoyed great backing from the Proteas management and selectors during last summer’s ODI series against England. Only 22 years old, Sipamla has a great future ahead of him. His recent move to the Lions could also be beneficial to his growth as a bowler by regularly playing alongside the likes of Kagiso Rabada and Beuran Hendricks. The right-armer held his own pretty well against the world champions at the beginning of the year and proved to be a handy bowling option for captain Quinton de Kock. More regular game time against the English and the following ODI series could only benefit Sipamla’s further development.