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Hashim backs AB to keep wicket

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Hashim Amla has backed fellow top-order batsman AB de Villiers to continue with his new role behind the stumps in South Africa's Test team.

Johannesburg – Hashim Amla has backed fellow top-order batsman AB de Villiers to continue with his new role behind the stumps in South Africa's Test team.

De Villiers has made 230 runs in four Tests, at an average of 46, since taking the gloves from veteran wicketkeeper Mark Boucher who retired earlier this season.

He has struggled to kick on, though, after getting starts, without contributing a half-century in six innings.

“I don't think any of us doubted that AB would be able to do both, keeping and maintain his high standards,” Amla said.

“Everybody goes through certain patches where they get starts and don't quite go through.

“I think he maybe went through a short patch like that but he is such an awesome player and when he gets starts he usually carries on.

“That was a short patch and hopefully in the games and years to come, if he still decides to be keeper, he will maintain both standards.”

Amla said the Proteas, who drew the first Test against Australia in a rain-interrupted match in Brisbane this week, would need to adapt to the conditions as they looked to beak the deadlock in the second game in Adelaide next week.

Amla, who made 104 runs in South Africa's first innings – his third ton in four Tests – was one five centurions in Brisbane, but the Proteas were not relying on another batting-friendly pitch.

“We anticipated something a bit quicker and more bowler friendly but the wicket seemed to flatten out quite nicely,” Amla said.

“I certainly enjoyed that and a few other guys enjoyed that.

“At the end of the day whatever surface we get dished up we try to apply ourselves as best as possible.

“When we get to Adelaide we will try and assess what kind of conditions we are going to have there and try and adapt accordingly.” – Sapa


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