• Three questions on Van Biljon’s birthday

    Proteas batsman Pite van Biljon turned 34 years old on Wednesday, 15 April 2020. He welcomed an international debut earlier this year, but whether he ever plays for the Proteas again remains in the balance.

    Should Van Biljon have played for the Proteas at all?

    • The hard-hitting right-hander deserved a first crack at the big stage after firing for the Jozi Stars during their 2018 title-winning Mzansi Super League campaign. He then moved to the Tshwane Spartans, who also reached an MSL final in 2019. They didn’t win that, though. Van Biljon averages over 30 and strikes at more than 130 in professional T20 cricket. This has included several important cameos for the Knights. His selection for the Proteas’ T20I series against Australia was warranted, but didn’t yield more than 17, seven not out and one. Sixth in the batting order is arguably too low for Van Biljon.

    Will Van Biljon be named in the Proteas T20 World Cup squad?

    • He probably won’t be named in South Africa’s squad for the T20 World Cup in Australia later this year. Unlike, say, Rassie van der Dussen, he didn’t succeed during his opening forays into international cricket. There isn’t much to his game to suggest he is an outright match-winner. He doesn’t bowl. The Proteas would arguably be better off selecting an additional all-rounder or young, exciting specialist batsman for the trip to Australia. There are decent options who have only recently been capped at international level or were impressive in domestic cricket.
    Pite van Biljon
    Pite van Biljon

    Where to next for Van Biljon?

    Photo: Gallo Images

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    Jonhenry Wilson