Proteas

Van Zyl's opening woes continue

Stiaan van Zyl (Getty)
Stiaan van Zyl (Getty)

Durban - Sunday was just the seventh time that Stiaan van Zyl has opened the batting for the Proteas in Test cricket, but there remain doubts over his suitability to the role. 

Van Zyl faced just two balls at Kingsmead before he left an in-swinger from Stuart Broad that clipped the top of off stump, and his long walk back to change room was greeted with a collective groan from the Durban crowd. 

It doesn't appear to be working out for Van Zyl at the top of the order. 

The Cape Cobras left-hander, who is a middle-order batsman by trade, endured a nightmare run in India along with the rest of the Proteas batting line-up, and it cost him his place in the fourth Test in Delhi. 

While the 28-year-old has been backed by the selectors for the first two Tests against England, he is now running out of time in his bid to make the opening position his own. 

There is a shortage of quality opening batsmen in the country right now, but possible replacements for Van Zyl should the selectors lose patience would be Stephen Cook, Quinton de Kock, Temba Bavuma and Heino Kuhn. 

Van Zyl's Test scores as an opener (opposition in brackets)

34 (Bangladesh)

33* (Bangladesh)

5 (India)

10 (India)

0 (India)

5 (India)

0 (England)

Total runs - 97

Average - 16.16

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