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‘South Africa newcomers failed to adapt to the intensity of international cricket’

South Africa coach Ottis Gibson also felt that fielding let them down in the third and final Twenty20 International vs India on Saturday.

cricket Updated: Feb 25, 2018 11:13 IST
Khurram Habib
Khurram Habib
Hindustan Times, Cape Town
Ottis Gibson,Chris Morris,India vs South Africa
South Africa lost both the One-Day International (ODI) and Twenty20 International series to India.(BCCI)

South Africa coach Ottis Gibson feels that although the youngsters in the team did well, there was a huge difference in the level of intensity needed and what they are used to performing at.

“If you see, the senior guys got injured. The new guys that came in, the level and the intensity they have had to perform at is different from what they have been accustomed to and they haven’t stepped up to and haven’t been able to adapt quickly enough. We’ve seen some exciting new talent,” said Gibson, who felt that poor fielding cost them the match as well as the series on Saturday.

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“We lost the game by seven runs tonight. The difference tonight would be the fielding. Dropped catches, fumbles cost us the game tonight.”

Gibson feels that a lot of players, especially Chris Morris, need to get back to domestic cricket to get their bearings right.

“I think you remember before I got back that all the players were asked to play domestic cricket. So I am a big fan of strong domestic league. If you have international cricketers not performing and then I’d think domestic cricket would be the place to go back. It is how you bounce back and the attitude that you have towards practicing and preparation will help you to get back where you want to be and where you belong in terms of your form, so it is just about those guys being very clear in their minds of what exactly they want to do.”

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One of the players Gibson wants to go to domestic cricket is Morris, who had been inconsistent in his bowling throughout the series.

“He has got some domestic cricket to go and get some consistency, especially in his bowling. He is a match-winner. He needs to find what type of bowler he wants to become and put practice in that and work in to become that person.”

Compared to what Morris and inexperienced Junior Dala dished, the Indian bowlers were on the money and Gibson says it is the experience of the Indian bowlers that made the difference.

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“India have got Jasprit Bumrah and Bhuvneshwar Kumar, two very experienced players. We’ve got Morris and debutant Junior Dala. The experience the Indians have of playing not just for India but also playing 3-4 years of IPL cricket has paid off in the end. Junior held his own very well. Chris Morris has got a lot of work to do.”

The ex-West Indies player feels that the presence of seniors against Australia will make a big difference.

“Seniors in any team make it stronger. Especially, the seniors we have coming back in our team. We missed them in this series. No doubt about that. So having them back will give everybody a lift.”

First Published: Feb 25, 2018 09:59 IST