Management’s Kallis dilemma

2014-07-11 00:00

JOHANNESBURG — What to do with Jacques Kallis?

This is the question facing the South African team management ahead of tomorrow’s decisive match in the One-Day series against Sri Lanka in Hambantota.

In his two innings to date Kallis only made one run while his sore and stiff back means he cannot be used as a bowler.

In short: Kallis has only been along for the ride in this series.

Nor is the decision the managers have to take only limited to the short term, for they also have to try and predict his form for next year’s World Cup tournament.

At this stage they must have serious doubts whether Kallis can make the team on merit only. Sentiment may at the end by the only criteria that will get him a place on the World Cup squad.

Faf du Plessis or AB de Villiers could have been much better selections for the number three batting order in tomorrow’s match.

Meanwhile, the management also worry about the availability of Dale Steyn.

He suffered a blow to his thumb when he tried to stop a ball off his own bowling. His hand became so swollen that he could not bend his thumb or forefinger to continue bowling.

A scan has since shown none of the small bones were broken, but the swelling will have to go down before a decision is taken to take him off the injured list.

Left-hand bowler Wayne Parnell is meanwhile readying himself.

De Villiers said his team’s instability is a source of frustration for him.

He admitted it does not bode well if a team win one match by 108 runs and lose the next by 87.

He said he did not like it at all to have been so totally “out of the picture” in the last 10 overs, but the loss of his wicket was mostly to blame for the subsequent collapse.

He said conditions in Hambantota will favour the South African team.

A hopeful De Villiers said there was a lot of pressure on the South Africans to win and it would be fantastic to finally win a series there. He said he believed the team were still in a position to do so.

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