Jacques Kallis says watching South African cricket stuck in the doldrums in recent years has been ‘frustrating’ but he was confident the Proteas would be restored to its former glory. Photo: BackpagePix

Jacques Kallis says watching South African cricket stuck in the doldrums in recent years has been ‘frustrating’ but he was confident the Proteas would be restored to its former glory. 

The South African great has been roped in to help with the turnaround as short-term batting consultant. 

Kallis joined the squad for their camp in Pretoria ahead of the first Test in a four-match series against England starting at SuperSport Park in Centurion on Boxing Day. 

“It’s been a frustrating couple of years for everyone to see where South African cricket has dropped to,” Kallis said at SuperSport Park on Friday.

“It’s about getting into a system where I think it is on the way up, off the field things are getting taken care of, and we trust the guys that are getting involved to get us back to where we need to be.”

Kallis was among a host of drastic changes to the Proteas management setup with Mark Boucher as head coach and Charl Langeveldt appointed as bowling coach.

The former Proteas allrounder said with the off-field issues at Cricket SA (CSA) being taken care of, their job was to whip the national side into shape during the four-match series. The tour will include a three-match ODI and three-match T20I series. 

“From a cricketing point of view I want to get involved to get us back to where we belong among the top few sides in the world,” Kallis said.

“If I can help in that process, I would certainly love to do that. I’ve always said if I join something I want to leave it in a better place than when I joined.”
Fighting metaphors was at the order of the day with both the players and the team management talking about getting the team ready for the battle against England. 

“Let’s give our guys a chance, we are a young side, and that is also dangerous,” Kallis said.

“Now the guys will go out there fighting, with Bouchie as a coach, he has already instilled that fighting among them.

“We will be up for the fight, and we are certainly not going to lie down. We are confident about the series, we believe we can win it otherwise we wouldn’t be playing.”

As for his role as the batting consultant, Kallis said he had no intention of making drastic changes but instead helping them make decisions and instilling some confidence. 

“I think we’ve got some talented players in the side that we can turn into world-class players and turn South African into being the number one, two or three in the world,” he said. 

@ockertde


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