We take a look at the top five potential youngsters to shine in the 2017-18 Africa T20 Cup.
Kyle Simmonds, 23, Boland:
The Durban-born all-rounder has been in great form lately, proven by his performances on South Africa Emerging’s tour to Zimbabwe. The Cape Cobras youngster scored a ton and recorded a five-for in the first unofficial Test against Zimbabwe A, followed by 64 and two scalps per innings in the second Test as they claimed the series 1-0. He followed up his form in the one-day matches, taking three wickets in the opening game and two wickets in the series-deciding second match, coupled with a ton, to put the visitors 2-0 up. If his current form is anything to go by, Simmonds could be vital to Boland’s chances in the competition.
Janneman Malan, 21, North West:
The 21-year-old was SA Emerging’s most consistent batsman on their tour to Zimbabwe in both the four-day and limited-overs format. In the first Test, he scored 66 and managed to score a ton and a half-century in the 50-over series to help SA Emerging go into a 2-0 series-wining lead. Coupled with an average of 37.37 in 13 first-class matches and an average exceeding 46 in the one-day format, Malan will look to make a statement for last season’s semi-finalists.
Dayyaan Galiem, 20, Western Province:
The ex-Rondebosch Boys’ High School pupil is an all-rounder and will look to make the Africa T20 Cup his stage to prove his talent, after a successful maiden season for his province and stints for the Cobras. He’s played nine first-class matches, scoring 296 @ 32.88 and has taken 26 wickets @ 24.30. The 20-year-old showed early signs of stardom after making his debut for SA U19 at the age of 16, having played with the likes of Kagiso Rabada, Andile Phehlukwyao and Aiden Markram. Injury, however, in 2014 ruled him out of the World Cup side who won the tournament, so the young all-rounder will have a lot to prove in a talented WP side.
Okuhle Cele, 20, KwaZulu-Natal:
The right-arm quick is an unpolished diamond so far, with 15 wickets from his first eight first-class matches, but he showed his skill consistently throughout SA Emerging’s tour to Zimbabwe. He took seven wickets in SA’s two unofficial Tests, but only played in the first 50-over match, ending with figures of 1-45. The youngster’s one-day average is an impressive 20.33, with an economy rate of 4.44 and could give KZN the spark they need to avoid another winless campaign.
Migael Pretorius, 22, Northerns:
The 2015-16 champions lacked a lethal wicket-taker last season, as their side failed to reach the semi-finals. Andrew Rasemene ended with the most wickets in the side, all three coming in their opening win against South Western district. Pretorius’ recent form suggests that he has the X-Factor to be a leading wicket-taker for his province, his SA Emerging stint backing up this claim comprehensively. A five-for in the first Test and a five-for in SA’s opening 50-over victory puts the young seamer in the perfect position to maintain the standard of his recent performances.
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