The rebuilding myth

Written by armand. Posted in Cricket, Opinion

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Published on January 04, 2012 with No Comments

After the seriously dissapointing showing the Proteas gave us at Kingsmead there were a lot of debates around on why we are struggling so much. At a New Years Party I again heard the angle that “we are in a rebuilding phase”. Bullshit.

What is a rebuilding phase? There are two definitions:
“When people rebuild something such as a building or a city, they build it again after it has been damaged or destroyed”
“When people rebuild something such as an institution, a system, or an aspect of their lives, they take action to bring it back to its previous condition”

To get the semantics out of the way, we can safely say neither of those definitions applies to the SA team. We have not been destroyed, and we don’t really have a great previous condition to rebuild to (no World Cups, no extended periods as no1 Test team). Sure, we have had our glimpses of brillinace like the 438 game, but have we kept that high standard going for two years consistenly?

If we look at the Squad against Australia and Sri Lanka this summer, we have a couple of new faces, but nothing major. We had Philander, who was a revelation coming in for an injured (not sacked) Tsotsobe, Tahir to replace Slow Bowler Harris, and Rudolph in the place of Peterson. That is it really. The core of the team remains Smith, Amla, Kallis, De Villiers, Boucher, Morkel and Steyn. To a lesser extent we can include Prince returning from injury, but ever since the Duminy revelation Down Under he has not been the regular fixture he was pre-2008.

If we want to start talking rebuilding/restructuring, let get the old out, and the new in. This is what I would do:

  • Sack Smith. Yeah, he is pretty decent. He scored a 100 against Australia. Even a blind squirrel finds a nut every now and then. Plonk in Rudolph in his spot.
  • Kick Boucher out. Yes, great servant to SA cricket. He is a bulldog, agreed. But he is old. We have AB in the team. He is an awesome keeper. Playing him as keeper opens a spot for someone like Duminy, where we get a better bat than Boucher, a great fielder like AB, and a better spinner than Harris. Sounds like a deal.
  • Kallis. Uhm, we can’t kick him out, he’s still too good. But grooming a Duminy in his place will make sure we have a continuity plan with a young all-rounder.
  • Then we have Morkel. Shamepies. He is good, and his ability is outstanding. Do we have a spot for him? Not the way De Lange is bowling, sorry mate.
  • Leave Amla alone. He is awesome. He has a beard and is a skin-head. He probably farts lightning.

My team would look as follow then:
1. Rudolph (if he fails in another series, bring in Levi… Get some Sehwag style going)
2. Peterson
3. Amla
4. Kallis
5. De Villiers
6. Rilee Rossouw/Dean Elgar
7. Duminy
8. Steyn
9. Philander
10. De Lange
11. Tahir

C’mon coach Gary, make those tough calls!

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