Former South Africa captain Shaun Pollock has urged Cricket South Africa (CSA) to try and convince AB de Villiers to come out and play for the Proteas in the upcoming Test series against India and Australia. De Villiers had taken a decision last year to take a voluntary break from red ball cricket to give himself recovery time. Pollock has suggested that the authorities try and talk the right handed batsman to make a comeback and be a pivotal member of the side.
“I definitely think they’ve got to go down the route of trying to convince AB de Villiers, even if it is just for six months for those two big tours, that he needs to make himself available. Then, the next step would be to try and find someone consistent at the top of the order. I think those are the two big challenges for the South Africans,” said Pollock on the Cricket Writers podcast.
‘ABD’ has not played a Test match since January last year when South Africa hosted England. And his future in the longest format continues to remain under cloud even though he has played the shorter versions of the game since. Earlier in June he had said, “I am going to meet with CSA (Cricket South Africa) in August, and that will decide my (international) future. We will see what works for both parties. We are not going to choose games but we are going to make a final decision about what happens for the next few years.”
Pollock added South Africa can use the Bangladesh series to iron out the chinks in their batting department which have been exposed in the on-going England Test series. “They have been disappointing, even the form players have shown little bits and pieces of what they’re capable of, but no one really has gone and gotten big scores consistently,” Pollock said.
“Hashim Amla has been okay by his standards, Dean Elgar’s got a hundred, Temba Bavuma has been solid without going on to three figures and Faf has shown glimpses. Quinton de Kock hasn’t been at his best, while the struggles of Heino Kuhn have been well documented.”
“So I think that it’s a bit of a challenge going forward. They’ve got Bangladesh coming up at home where they can maybe try and settle things down, but then they’ve two big tours, India at the end of the year and then Australia after that, those are massive tours,” he added.However he expressed happiness with the bowling department. “The bowling line-up looks settled, they’ve got Keshav Maharaj who has come on in leaps and bounds and maybe even Dale Steyn could be back at some stage we would hope,” Pollock said.