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Old 3rd April 2017, 10:07   #101
Midnight
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AB isn't going to England so that weakens the batting even more.

Amla should open, given his diminished performances at #3 won't make much difference either way. SA hasn't another opening position, so they should hedge their bets.

That would allow them to shore up the middle-order with orthodox middle-order players, rather than try to manufacture an opener, especially a young one. Allow the youngsters to play in their real spots. de Kock should also stay as the all-round option as keeper and late order batsman.
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Old 6th April 2017, 20:10   #102
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AB isn't going to England so that weakens the batting even more.

Amla should open, given his diminished performances at #3 won't make much difference either way. SA hasn't another opening position, so they should hedge their bets.

That would allow them to shore up the middle-order with orthodox middle-order players, rather than try to manufacture an opener, especially a young one. Allow the youngsters to play in their real spots. de Kock should also stay as the all-round option as keeper and late order batsman.
Would that be wise? Usual wisdom would suggest him dropping a position down rather than up. Have de Bruyn come at number 3 and try someone else as an opener- Those who actually follow domestic cricket are the likes of Pieter Malan and Rassie van der Dussen any good?
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Old 5th May 2017, 10:46   #103
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Little doubt really that this will be one of the weakest SA side to tour England since readmission - certainly in terms of batting. You could probably put question marks over the entire batting setup with the exception of Elgar, de Kock. Even du Plessis whilst undoubtedly tenacious, doesn't quite have the same formidability as the side's batting lynch pin. That said this might be one of the weaker England attacks SA will have faced on these shores, although one which you'd still say comparably stronger than their fragile batting stocks.

In terms of SA domestic cricket i'll admit now i'm far to out of touch to comment but i get the impression the standard is relatively low.
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Old 5th May 2017, 11:24   #104
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Little doubt really that this will be one of the weakest SA side to tour England since readmission - certainly in terms of batting. You could probably put question marks over the entire batting setup with the exception of Elgar, de Kock. Even du Plessis whilst undoubtedly tenacious, doesn't quite have the same formidability as the side's batting lynch pin. That said this might be one of the weaker England attacks SA will have faced on these shores, although one which you'd still say comparably stronger than their fragile batting stocks.

In terms of SA domestic cricket i'll admit now i'm far to out of touch to comment but i get the impression the standard is relatively low.
Not helpful when you have some potential reinforcements who have taken the (devalued) pound as kolpaks.
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Old 6th May 2017, 16:33   #105
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Certainly wouldn't say this is one of the weaker England attacks, myself. Guess it depends what people's views on Anderson are but I think he's still a class act and in typical swinging English conditions is arguably still the most dangerous bowler in the world. Broad's fine, of course, and as an opening pair they're as good as England have had in a long time and both have recorded their most impressive figures over the past three years or so, apparent decline of Anderson or not.

Stokes has really emerged as an excellent bowling option, now, and I guess there may be some question marks over Woakes still but - like Anderson - I'd say in home conditions he's a really dangerous player. Only real problem is the same old spin one.

It's interesting regarding SA's batting. I'm still expecting us to play the likes of Amla into form, and Elgar and Cook have both been impressive so far for their counties. Obviously De Kock is a top player too, and if Du Plessis doesn't quite resonate with the same formidability as leaders in times gone by he's still a batsman we'd quite like to have! The bowling looks decent, too. There's always hype around one seamer when the top sides tour us who'll take advantage of our wintry skies and fragile top order but it seems that we allow spinners to exploit fairly ordinary pitches too often. Thinking back to the Ashes when Nathan Lyon struck Cook out time after time despite the pre-series predictions that Johnson would do so.
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Old 6th May 2017, 18:13   #106
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No doubt this SA side doesn't quite have the same aura of some of the post-readmission sides. But that doesn't make the current crop bad at all - they've just won their last 4 series, including away in Australia!

I make both the SA & England teams as pretty decent ones, albeit with clear flaws (just like Australia & India). I expect this to be another cracking series like most (if not all?) SA-England series in the last 20 years.
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Old 6th May 2017, 18:24   #107
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