Shamsi ready to shine for SA
Shamsi was the pick of the bowlers for the Proteas at Newlands, boasting an economy rate of 3.80 which is especially impressive in today’s game where free-flowing high scoring is the norm.
After serving as cover and support to the Pakistani-born Imran Tahir during since debuting against Australia in 2016, Shamsi would have accumulated a lot of knowledge and he showed that he has the potential to do the job by taking an impressive 3/38 at Newlands.
“I’m excited about this new chapter. For me personally, it felt like I was starting my career in Cape Town. Whenever I play, I want to make an impact for the team help the team win games. I’m excited to make mistakes along the way because now I have time to work on them,” said Shamsi.
As a result of being more or less a squad rotation player over the years, Shamsi’s progress may have been curtailed and this is something which he is aiming to rectify.
“Previously when I played an odd game, it was only about three months later when I could correct my mistakes. There was not that consistency (which comes with playing regularly). It was nice to get off to a good start,” he added.
Another spin bowler who has a chance to firmly establish himself as the Proteas batting all-rounder is Jon-Jon Smuts. The 31-year-old, who is a veteran of the domestic scene, bowled well during the first ODI taking 1/43. He is more than capable of filling the void which was left following the retirement of JP Duminy.
Kingsmead has been a happy hunting ground for the Proteas during recent years as they have won several out of their last 10 games at Durban’s home of cricket which includes winning their last two consecutive games against Sri Lanka and Pakistan at the ground. The last time that they tasted defeat at the ground was against India in February 2018 following a Virat Kohli masterclass century.
Whilst the Proteas won the first ODI comfortably, they cannot afford to rest on their laurels.
The current English side have plenty of strength in depth and are perfectly capable of bouncing back strongly.
They proved that after losing the opening Boxing Day Test match at Centurion before going on to demolish the Proteas 3-1 in the four Test series.
South Africa: Quinton de Kock (wk, capt), Reeza Hendricks, Temba Bavuma, Rassie van der Dussen, David Miller, Jon-Jon Smuts, Andile Phehlukwayo, Beuran Hendricks, Lutho Sipamla, Tabraiz Shamsi, Lungi Ngidi
England: Jason Roy, Jonny Bairstow (wk), Joe Root, Eoin Morgan (capt), Joe Denly, Tom Banton, Sam Curran, Chris Woakes, Tom Curran, Chris Jordan, Adil Rashid@EshlinV