It’s all falling into place for Proteas
AHEAD of the Test series between South Africa and Bangladesh at the end of the month, there have been several, very sensible decisions made by all parties concerned.
The first, and perhaps most pertinent decision, was that of Ottis Gibson being confirmed as the Proteas’ next head coach. While it was an open secret, final confirmation of the matter allows the team to look forward, and also paved the way for another massive decision in SA cricket to take place.
The announcement by AB de Villiers, where he confirmed that he was available to play in all three formats again, was a timely boost for Gibson and the rest of the team.
De Villiers also confirmed that he would relinquish the one-day captaincy, thus paving the way for Faf du Plessis to lead the side in all three formats.
Du Plessis is universally recognised as the best man for the job, and he can now settle into his plans alongside Gibson.
The latest decision made around the Proteas’ camp is the retention of the previous regime’s support management for the Bangladesh series. Cricket South Africa announced on Wednesday that assistant coach Adrian Birrell, bowling coach Charl Langeveldt and batting guru Neil McKenzie would all stay in the picture.
Gibson, it is understood, was consulted on the matter, and agreed with the decision to not disrupt too much else, with such a short turnaround between his confirmation and his opening assignment.
Gibson also looks likely to have the return of Dale Steyn to look forward to before long.
Steyn opted out of next week’s opening round of Sunfoil Series fixtures, and will instead play in a club fixture to gauge his fitness levels. A massive summer will unfurl itself for the Proteas, so Steyn and his employers will know that a marathon approach is better than a dash for the start line.