The South African T20 captain – in between walking the dogs on the beach, pumping iron in the gym and cooking up a storm in Stellenbosch – has kept an eye on Bangladesh’s recent run of success and the unusual manner in which it’s been achieved.
Bangladesh have lost just once in their last 11 One-Day Internationals on home soil, which includes series wins against Pakistan (3-0) and India (2-1) in the last three months. A great deal of their achievements have occurred as a result of the utilisation of four seam bowlers; teenager left-armer Mustafizur Rahman, right armer Taskin Ahmed, the veteran Mashrafe Mortaza and 25-year-old Robel Hossein.
“It’s a huge surprise (to see their fast bowlers come to the fore) because in the sub-continent you play against teams with great spinners and it’s rare to play a team with a great seam attack – it’s usually just one or two seamers – but they’ve done really well and they surprised India with that,” Du Plessis said ahead of the T20 side’s departure for Bangladesh last night.
Mustafizur (19) announced himself as a potential star by picking up 13 wickets against the Indians including hauls of 5/50 and 6/43 in the first two matches of the series. “I think India expected a lot of spin and ended up losing a lot of their wickets to the seam bowlers.
“Luckily we can try and learn from the mistakes the Indians made and ttry and avoid those errors,” Du Plessis added.
Despite the success of those quicks, neither Du Plessis nor South Africa’s coach Russell Domingo are expecting the Bangladeshis to suddenly change conditions to suit fast bowling. “I think the wickets will be typically sub-continent wickets,” remarked Domingo.
“They will know that we also have four quicks. Maybe India didn’t have the four quicks that could match them, but (Bangladesh) will know that if they prepare wickets that suit fast bowling, that will play very much into our hands. “
The South African T20 squad, which will play two Internationals as part of the tour, is a mix of the old and the new, in keeping with what Du Plessis remarked was an experimental phase for the side. His eye is very much on the World T20 tournament to be played next April in India, so for the likes of Kagiso Rabada, Chris Morris, Beuran Hendricks, David Wiese and Eddie Leie, the tour is a chance to establish their credentials in the absence of big names like Dale Steyn, Morné Morkel and Imran Tahir.
SA T20 squad: Quinton de Kock, Rilee Rossouw, Faf du Plessis (capt), AB de Villiers, Dave Miller, JP Duminy, David Wiese, Chris Morris, Kagiso Rabada, Kyle Abbott, Beuran Hendricks, Eddie Leie, Wayne Parnell, Aaron Phangiso. - The StarThe new look Bangladesh – the Bangladesh of four fast bowlers – is one that Faf du Plessis admits has surprised him.
Original source: Proteas wary of Bangladesh