Ottis Gibson –South Africa head coach, on Tuesday, said that he is a “very fast bowling-minded coach” and the fast bowling attack with four-pronged pacers would continue in his strategy in the remaining Tests of the Freedom Test series against India at home.
According to a report in Sportstarlive, Gibson said, “When you’re playing at home you play to your strengths and at the moment we have some high-quality, fast bowlers.”
Even without Dale Steyn, who was ruled out of the series within injured heel, South African has a formidable pace pack with the likes of Vernon Philander, Morne Morkel, Kagiso Rabada, and the dynamic pace-bowling all-rounder Chris Morris in their current line-up.
Not just that, the South African selectors have also named fast bowler Duanne Olivier and the uncapped Lungi Ngidi as a dual replacement for Steyn in the squad to add up quality to their pace attack for the second Test against India.
Commenting on the Centurion wicket, Gibson said, “You saw some good fast bowlers on both sides and from my understanding of Centurion, it is a pitch with some pace and bounce and that will probably be the make-up of the team going forward.”
Gibson added, “I’m a very fast bowling-minded coach and I guess we’ll always have to find a balance with whether or not we can get four fast bowlers in the team, first of all. If not, then we will try and look to shape the team in other ways. Ultimately, and especially in this series and for the rest of the summer, we’ll be looking to see how best we can fit four fast bowlers into whatever formula we come up with.”
With Steyn ruled out of the Freedom Series, the hosts can leave out left-arm spinner Keshav Maharaj and include an additional batsman Temba Bavuma in their line-up for the second Test, and when asked about the possibilities, Gibson replied, “He’s (Maharaj) been spoken to about how we’re going to look to shape for this series and he is very much a part of it.”
The Proteas coach concluded by saying, “With the nature of the pitch, Kesh (Maharaj) didn’t get to operate as much as he normally does for us, but he is still a very important part of our group, whether he plays or not. Kesh is certainly a big part of our plans moving forward into the summer and even beyond that because he’s a world class spinner.”