Amla: I haven’t changed a thing

2017-02-02 06:02
Hashim Amla.

Hashim Amla.

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HASHIM Amla is back in form - a crucial boost for the Proteas in all three formats.

Having gone 10 Test innings without passing 50, there were concerns that the ‘Mighty Hash’ was struggling.

He certainly was, but as the old cliche goes, ‘form is temporary and class is permanent’.

Amla proved just that in his 100th Test match - the third Test against Sri Lanka in Johannesburg last month. On day one of that match he batted beautifully to reach his 26th Test century.

He followed that up with a score of 57 in the opening ODI against Sri Lanka in Port Elizabeth on Sunday, and all of a sudden the Amla of old is back.

He was as calm as ever when times were tough, and he revealed in Durban on Tuesday that he never got too carried away when he wasn’t scoring runs.

He consulted former batting coach Phil Russell and focused on the basics of his game, but Amla never changed any of his fundamentals.

At 33, he has been around the block a few times and he knew not to panic.

“I haven’t changed. That is how it goes ... you go through a lean patch and thankfully I’ve managed to get some runs in the last two innings, but you take nothing for granted and hopefully it can continue,” he said.

“There are much better players than me who have gone through bad patches ... it’s the way this game goes.”

Although he is now based at the Cape Cobras, Kingmsead will always be home for the Durban High School product.

“Playing at Kingsmead is always nice and we’ve had some good success as a team,” said Amla.

“I’ve got some runs here and there. We just want to perform, whether it’s here or anywhere. I don’t feel any added pressure.”

The Proteas are heavily favoured to win once again, and that is largely down to their powerful batting line-up.

“At the moment, the way each guy is batting, the line-up looks very solid,” said Amla.

“Quinny [De Kock] is one of the best, Faf [Du Plessis] has been in really good form, AB [De Villiers] is a legend, JP [Duminy] has been batting well ... everybody has been contributing. The batting line-up is feeling good.”

An in-form Amla added to that already explosive top order makes it even more dangerous, and the good news is that he is not going anywhere anytime soon.

“I take it as it comes ... I don’t plan too far ahead,” he said. Cricket is what motivates me. I enjoy batting and I enjoy playing for my country ... I still feel like I’m 18.” - Sports24.

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