Captain Markram primed to lead Proteas: 'I've had my eye on Aiden for a very long time'

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South African batter Aiden Markram
South African batter Aiden Markram
Alex Davidson/Getty Images

  • Proteas white-ball coach Rob Walter believes that Aiden Markram is the perfect candidate to lead the national side in T20 cricket.
  • Markram captained the Sunrisers Eastern Cape to the inaugural SA20 title earlier this year.
  • The elegant right-hander impressed when captaining the Proteas to a four-wicket win over the West Indies earlier this week when regular captain Temba Bavuma was injured.

New Proteas white-ball coach Rob Walter has praised the array of options open to him, but says he has always been fully aware of the leadership capabilities offered by Aiden Markram.

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Markram, who captained the Proteas on Tuesday in a four-wicket win over the West Indies to level the ODI series 1-1, captains South Africa in the three-match T20 series against the same opponents that starts on Saturday.

Speaking to reporters on Thursday, Walter acknowledged that Markram, who also captained the SA U19 side to World Cup glory in 2014 and the Sunrisers Eastern Cape to the inaugural SA20 title earlier this year, had done a fine job in Temba Bavuma's absence during the third ODI.

"It wasn't a clincher. I've had my eye on Aiden for a very long time from a leadership point of view and have watched him go about his work," said Walter.

"I thought he did a very good job, and it's not surprising. I'm fully aware of his leadership capabilities, and I thought he marshalled the troops quite nicely.

"He made some good tactical decisions around bowling changes, which was good to see, so I'm just looking for more of the same," Walter added.

The Proteas limited-overs mentor confirmed there were other reasons why Markram was given the captain's armband of the T20 side.

"Part of Aiden's appointment is also looking forward and understanding where he is in his cricketing cycle and how many years he'll hopefully be dedicating to the Proteas."

"I think the SA20 gave us a glimpse into his style and his ability from a leadership point of view, so I don't think we'll see anything different from that."

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