South Africa won a closely fought T20I series against an intimidating West Indies outfit, here, Rohit Sankar takes a look at how the South African players fared on their report card.
Quinton de Kock: 9/10
255 runs @ 51.0, SR 141.6
After a middling series against England in 2020, de Kock maintained his aggressive starts in the powerplay and consistently put South Africa in solid positions early on. He hit three fifties in five games and was pivotal for the Proteas in the series finale with his partnership with Markram.
Aiden Markram: 8/10
113 runs @ 37.6, SR: 131.39,
Why Aiden Markram did not play the first couple of games is a mystery that will likely not be answered. He, however, put a strong case to be de Kock’s partner at the top in the long run in the three appearances he had, although he didn’t actually ever open the innings.
Reeza Hendricks: 2/10
78 runs @ 19.50, SR: 139.28,
Reeza Hendricks could not justify his selection over Markram and had another dry run in the series, putting his T20 World Cup selection in doubt. His only contribution of note was a handy 42 in the second T20I.
Rassie van der Dussen: 5/10
97 runs @ 24.25, SR: 129.33
Van der Dussen started the series with a 38-ball 56 that lifted South Africa from a tricky position, but his returns were quite slim elsewhere.
Temba Bavuma: 2/10
76 runs @ 15.20, SR: 108.57
Bavuma’s captaincy was found wanting on quite a few occasions as he switched bowlers questionably and fiddled around with part-timers far too often. To compound his woes, he made just 30 runs in four innings. The only innings saving his grace was a 46 from No.3 in the second T20I. His move up to open the batting in the decider also raises questions on what South Africa see Markram’s role as going into the T20 World Cup.
David Miller: 1/10
52 runs @ 13.00, SR: 108.33
David Miller’s role in the T20I side will be under severe scrutiny after this series. He could neither get himself in nor start well and often looked out of sorts against slow bowlers.
Heinrich Klaasen: 1/10
17 runs @ 8.50, SR: 73.91
Klaasen’s tendency to go through an extended rough patch after a couple of good knocks resumed yet again as he made little impact in the series. With South Africa having more all-round options in the squad, Klaasen’s looks increasingly at risk of missing out in the T20 World Cup squad.
George Linde: 7/10
6 wickets @ 20.83, Economy: 7.81
Linde strengthened his position as the second spinner behind Tabraiz Shamsi in the T20I line-up. He was clever against West Indies’ array of left-handers and appears to be the kind of bowler South Africa will need in the T20 World Cup. They will hope he can step up with the bat with handy cameos, though.
Wiaan Mulder: 8/10
9* & 4-0-31-2 in only game
Mulder picked up the big wickets of Kieron Pollard and Andre Russell off successive balls in the final game to help tilt the match firmly in South Africa’s direction. The Proteas will need to see more of his potential in the next few months to decide on his World Cup chances.
Tabraiz Shamsi: 9/10
7 wickets @ 11.42, Economy: 4.00
Shamsi justified his tag as the No.1 ranked ICC T20I bowler as he finished the series against West Indies’ never-ending stream of big hitters with an economy rate of 4.00. He picked up seven wickets and was South Africa’s trump card right through the series.
Anrich Nortje: 8/10
4 wickets @ 24.5, Economy: 7.00
Nortje missed the final, but his role in the South Africa T20I setup became pretty evident in the series. He picked up two wickets in the powerplay and two at the death and went at less than eight runs per over in both phases. In the middle, he played the enforcer role to perfection, denying the big hitters big runs and forcing them to take on spin.
Kagiso Rabada: 4/10
7 wickets @ 24.28, Economy: 9.44
Rabada’s economy rate remains a concern even as he ended the series as South Africa’s joint-highest wicket-taker. He leaked runs at 13.83 runs per over at the death, and it’s a worrying trend that South Africa will want to arrest soon.
Lungi Ngidi: 3/10
5 wickets @ 39.40, Economy rate: 10.9, Best: 3-32
Like Rabada, Ngidi bowled far too many ‘hit-me’ balls, and ended the series with an economy rate of 10.9. Worryingly, he went at 12.33 runs per over in the death.
Bjorn Fortuin: 3/10
1-0-11-0 in only game
Fortuin played just the final game of the series and opened the bowling. He was lucky to concede only 11 of the one over as he struggled to contain the big-hitting Evin Lewis. That said, Bavuma is more to blame for the poor match-up than the left-arm spinner.
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