The South African national cricket team arrived in Dhaka on Tuesday fully knowing the challenge that they are going to face during their visit of over a month. Batsman Faf du Plessis led the Twenty20 squad that landed Hazrat Shahjalal International Airport around 5:30pm, nine hours after their scheduled arrival. They were scheduled to arrive at 8:20am in the morning but Bangladesh Cricket Board officials said the team missed the connecting flight in Dubai, causing the delay.
The visitors, who will play two Twenty20 internationals, three one-day internationals and two Tests in the tour, avoided the media on their arrival and mostly confined themselves at hotel on Tuesday.
But prior to their departure, Twenty20 captain Du Plessis told local media that they kept an eye on Bangladesh’s recent performance and were surprised to see their hosts using four fast bowlers against India.
‘It’s a huge surprise (to see their fast bowlers come to the fore) because in the sub-continent you play against teams with great spinners and it’s rare to play a team with a great seam attack – it’s usually just one or two seamers – but they’ve done really well and they surprised India with that,’ Independent Online quotes Du Plessis as saying.
‘Luckily we can try and learn from the mistakes the Indians made and try and avoid those errors,’ Du Plessis added.
Despite the success of those quick bowlers against India, South African think -tanks however are expecting the Bangladeshis to suddenly change their strategy and prepare a typical sub-continent wicket for them.
‘They will know that we also have four quicks. Maybe India didn’t have the four quicks that could match them, but (Bangladesh) will know that if they prepare wickets that suit fast bowling, that will play very much into our hands,’ said coach Russell Domingo.
Earlier in a separate progamme Domingo said that the tour will be a great test of character for their next generation of fast bowlers.
‘It’s a great opportunity for our next tier of bowlers, guys like Kagiso Rabada and Chris Morris,’ The Citizen quoted Domingo as saying.
There aren’t many opportunities for guys to get international experience these days and it will be tough in Bangladesh with the crowds, the weather and the nature of the pitches. It’s a really tough test for fast bowlers,’ he said at the unveiling ceremony of team’s new Twenty20 sponsor Oxigen.
South Africa will open their campaign with two Twenty20 Internationals scheduled at the Sher-e-Bangla National Stadium respectively on July 5 and 7.
The first two ODIs will be played in Dhaka respectively on July 10, 12 respectively before the teams travel to Chittagong for the final match of the series on July 15.
The opening Test match will be played at Zahur Ahmed Chowdhury Stadium in Chittagong from July 21-25 while the last Test match will be played at Mirpur from July 30 to August 3.
Hashim Amla will lead the ODI and Test squad. Both and Test and ODI series will include Decision Review System.
Pace bowler Dale Steyn will feature solely in the Test matches while AB de Velliers will take part only in ODI’s and Twenty20 matches.
-With New Age input