Lack of exposure to UK conditions behind series loss, says Proteas captain Dean Elgar | Cricket News

LONDON: captain of the Proteas Dean Elgar and outgoing head coach Mark Boucher both conceded that lack of experience played a major role in South Africait’s 1-2 Series of trials defeat at England.
The hosts sealed an emphatic nine-wicket win in the Third Test to complete an excellent triumph from behind at the Kia Oval on Monday.
South Africa comfortably won the first Test by one set and 12 points last month, with the home side hitting back with a fine victory in the second Test which they won by one set and 85 points in Manchester.
They were also ahead for most of the litmus test – a clash that was effectively a three-day match after day one was won and day two suspended following the death of Queen Elizabeth II – dismissing the Proteas for poor scores of 118 and 169.
“I think lack of experience and lack of exposure to Test cricket (played a part),” Elgar said afterwards.
“The lack of exposure to UK conditions with the ball swinging and pinching. We were also exposed to the type of kicking conditions in this test, particularly when the ball pinches a lot.
“It was up there with some of the toughest conditions I’ve encountered and I have relatively decent experience. So I can only imagine how a guy who only has one or two tests on his active must feel. It was tough all around.”
The South Africans faced just 92.4 overs in the third Test after, with skipper Elgar’s 36 their highest score of the game. In the whole series, Marc Jansenone of the few bright lights for tourists, achieved the highest batting average – 27.33 – eclipsing all team specialists.
Coach Boucher admitted it wasn’t a good streak for hitters.
“We always knew we would be under pressure if the conditions turned around a bit,” he explained.
“I think in South Africa the conditions are not the same. The ball doesn’t swing, the contact points are a bit different. I know we talk from experience and that, but these hitters who are here have always been the best hitters in our country.
“If you look at the last seven top hitters who came to England and won the last series, I think between them there were 470 odd Test matches, that’s between the top seven. In this series, 10 of the batters used to bat in the top seven, they’re on 170.
“So there’s a big difference and the only way to get experience is to go out there and play. We’ve got guys to play in quite a few test matches, in conditions where the ball has turned a little, but they don’t have it, and that’s a shame.”
The result of the English series leaves the Proteas in second place in the ICC World Test Championship standings. The team will now break up before reuniting later in the year ahead of their three-test tour for Australia.

Leave a Comment