Proteas

Elgar says IPL players shouldn't expect to walk straight back into Test side

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South African spinner Simon Harmer (AFP)
South African spinner Simon Harmer (AFP)
Marco Longari / AFP
  • Proteas Test skipper Dean Elgar says it will be unfair for the Indian Premier League players to come back swiftly into the Test squad.
  • South Africa sealed a 2-0 Test series win against Bangladesh without superstars Kagiso Rabada, Lungi Ngidi, Rassie van der Dussen, Aiden Markram, Marco Jansen and Anrich Nortje.
  • Elgar says that he encouraged the players to "put them under pressure and make a play" for themselves in the Test side.

Proteas Test skipper Dean Elgar believes the several South Africans, who opted to play in the ongoing Indian Premier League (IPL), should not expect to walk into the team following his side's Test series triumph against Bangladesh.

South Africa clinched an emphatic 332-run win against the Tigers at St George's Park to seal the two-match Test series 2-0.

The Proteas did the job without six regular Test players, including fast bowlers Kagiso Rabada, Anrich Nortje, Lungi Ngidi and Marco Jansen and batters Rassie van der Dussen and Aiden Markram.

Their decision to withdraw from the Test side to play in the lucrative T20 competition, saw the return of spinner Simon Harmer, who played his first Proteas Test since 2015, and debuts for Lizaad Williams and Ryan Rickelton.

The Proteas sealed a comprehensive win in Durban, winning by 220 runs, but were dominant with both bat and ball as they secured a clinical win at St George's Park.

In Gqeberha, South Africa were impressive as they scored four half-centuries in the first innings and then tore through the Bangladesh batting lineup.

Harmer and Player of Series Keshav Maharaj bamboozled the tourists as they collected all 10 wickets once again in the tourist's second innings.

Speaking to reporters, Elgar admitted that it'd be unfair for the IPL players to come straight back into the side following their series win.

"Honestly, I don't think the statement of them coming back is a fair one. I think the guys that have played right now have made a massive statement with the few opportunities that they had," Elgar said.

"We've got a decent batting pool going forward now, but I can't speak whether those guys will be selected or not again. That's out of my hands."

Elgar singled out 25-year-old Ryan Rickelton, who made an impression with the bat as he scored 114 runs at an average of 38 this series.

"It was nice to see young guys like Ryan come in and take to it very well," said Elgar.

"Yes, the intensity of the Test cricket wasn't the same like playing against England, but he understands the arena and what can be expected going forward. There's time to iron out those creases."

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Elgar revealed that before the series started, he had encouraged the newcomers to put pressure on players who weren't available for the Bangladesh Tests.

"My message for the new guys coming in was to put the guys under pressure; to go out there and make a play for yourself and be a team player," said Elgar.

"Just put those players under pressure and make sure their selection is warranted. And that they shouldn't oversell their value as a new young cricketer in a new environment."

Elgar's next assignment will be against England away in three Tests from 17 August-12 September.

"It's a great headache to have, trust me. You always want more options than none. By giving guys more experience, you are obviously creating a lot more depth going forward," said Elgar.

"We got a few challenging away series coming up, but we just got to focus on the first one coming up, which is England.

"At the moment, our Test side is in a very healthy position. It could've been a different summer, but in a fortunate and strong position by giving guys exposure at this level. The guys have put up their hands brilliantly, it's great to see."


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