PAARL – Few would argue that had the Mzansi Super League been in operation just over five years ago, Charl Langeveldt would arguably have been among the first selections at the player draft.
Langeveldt was, of course, a supreme ‘death’ bowler armed with all the skills and trickery to succeed in white-ball cricket.
A last-over ODI hat trick to sensationally snatch a one-run victory for the Proteas in the Caribbean back in 2005 was testament not only to his talent, but also his ability to perform under extreme pressure.
These are all qualities that T20 franchises pay millions of dollars for around the world, and it was no wonder that “Langes” played both in the Indian Premier League for the Kolkata Knight Riders and in England’s T20 Blast.
These days, though, the 43-year-old finds himself showing others how to deliver his famous “knuckle ball”, or the wide yorker, for that matter.
After a successful stint as the Proteas bowling coach during Russell Domingo’s tenure, Langeveldt now guides the Afghanistan national team’s bowlers as they prepare for the ICC World Cup in England next year.
“It would have been nice (to play in the MSL T20) because it does expose you to international cricket. T20 cricket does that because it sets you up for the world stage.
“But no, it’s not going to happen. I hung up the boots for a reason. I don’t want to bowl anymore,” Langeveldt told Independent Media exclusively at Boland Park on Thursday.
“It is a good opportunity for the local guys playing in the Mzansi League. It is an opportunity for them to play against international players to see where they are.
“I think with all the international guys coming in, they are going to bring a lot of experience to the dressing rooms for the youngsters to learn from.”
Having worked closely with the World’s No 1 T20 bowler Rashid Khan with Afghanistan, Langeveldt believes South Africans are in for a treat when the ace leg-spinner gets his fingers twirling in this season’s MSL T20 for the Durban Heat.
Khan may only be 20-years-old, but he is a already a T20 League veteran, having gained experience playing in Australia’s Big Bash for the Adelaide Strikers, the Guyana Amazon Warriors in the Caribbean Premier League, the Sunrisers Hyderabad in the IPL, Comilla Victorians in the Bangladesh Premier League and the Quetta Gladiators in Pakistan’s Super League.
“I think he is going to clean up!” Langeveldt exclaimed. “We struggle with spin anyways.
“He is a real professional. He wants to win all cricket games he plays in. He will do well in the league. All the best to our batters...”@ZaahierAdams