South African wicket-keeper batsman Heinrich Klaasen has grabbed the opportunity with both hands in the absence of Quinton de Kock. After having a few good outings in the ODIs, his innings in Centurion drived South Africa to a series-levelling victory in the second T20I.
Klaasen scored 69 off just 30 deliveries while batting in the middle order. With the required run rate constantly creeping up, South Africa needed to score at more than 10 runs per over. Klaasen took a special liking to Yuzvendra Chahal. Chahal gave away 23 runs in his third over which gave the South African chase the much-needed impetus which then stylishly finished off by skipper Duminy.
After this knock Klaasen has certainly strengthened his case to play regularly in the ODI squad for South Africa. However with de Kock out and injured Klaasen has denied all rumors regarding him being a threat to the left-handed batsman.
Asked if De Kock needs to get worried, Klaasen said, “No, not at all. I think he is a world-class player. Especially top of the order. I don’t think he has anything to worry about yet. If you look at Quinny, AB and Faf and with Temba coming back as well. They are world-class players."
“So, in some sort, to put my name in that list is good. It is definitely a very important stage of my career – putting myself on the map or in this setup. But if this is my last game, the weekend one, so be it, I am happy with it. My dream is fulfilled,” he added.
Klaasen says the threat of rain allowed his team to keep up with the run rate.
“I think the way we actually batted tonight, it’s a good way to chase a total. Keep up with the rate, keep up with Duckworth-Lewis. That just gave us small targets. When to go, when not to go. Maybe something to think about going forward.”
JP Duminy on the other end played second fiddle to Klassen who was blasting the ball to all parts of the ground. Klassen and Duminy added 93 runs which then prompted to Duminy to finish the game with 8 balls to spare.
Duminy scored an unbeaten 64 to help South Africa to a series-levelling win, giving his chance a very good chance to bounce back and win the series in the next T20I. The final T20I of the series will be played on Saturday in Cape Town which will also conclude India's two-month-long vigil in South Africa.