Be it 50 overs or the T20 version, South Africa go into every World Cup edition as one of the strong contenders.

Be it 50 overs or the T20 version, South Africa go into every World Cup edition as one of the strong contenders. They compete as well, but in the end, fall short of glory. This, in a nutshell, is the story of Proteas’ performances in ICC tournaments. They will hope to rewrite history this time. South Africa will be led by the gutsy Temba Bavuma yet again. Quinton de Kock, Aiden Markram, David Miller and Heinrich Klaasen are the other key batters in the team. In the bowling, they have retained tried and tested performers in Kagiso Rabada, Anrich Nortje, Keshav Maharaj and Tabraiz Shamsi. Bjorn Fortuin, Marco Jansen, Andile Phehlukwayo have been named as standby players in the squad. Here’s the SWOT analysis of South Africa’s ICC T20 World Cup 2022 squad.

Strengths: Plethora of match-winners in both departments 

South Africa’s biggest strength at the T20 World Cup will be the number of genuine match-winners they have in both the batting and bowling departments. Starting from the top, experienced keeper-batter Quinton de Kock can single-handedly snatch the match away from any opponent. He has all the strokes in the book to do so. David Miller will pose a massive threat following his rebirth as a deadly stroke-maker. 

In the bowling, pacers Anrich Nortje and Kagiso Rabada are arguably the most dangerous fast bowling pair in world cricket at present. Both can swing matches on their own. The left-arm spin duo of Keshav Maharaj and Tabraiz Shamsi are also proven performers in the format, although it remains to be seen how effective they can be in Australia. 

Weaknesses: Inconsistent performers

The problem for South Africa is that they have as many inconsistent performers and unknown quantities as they have established players. Looking at the captain himself, he is not someone who can be considered a dangerous T20 player. He has an average strike rate of 120.60 in T20Is. He might not even merit a place in the squad if he wasn’t the skipper. 

Heinrich Klaasen has played some fine knocks, but consistency is not his forte as well, while Reeza Hendricks is yet to fully establish himself at the international level. The list goes on and on. Lungi Ngidi, Wayne Parnell, Dwaine Pretorius and Rilee Rossouw are all players who have been in and out of the squad in recent years. Tristan Stubbs is a young superstar, but he has only just begun his T20I career.

Opportunity: To shed chokers tag

This is something that is brought up every time South Africa feature in an ICC event. There is nothing wrong with the team as such, but they somehow find a way to push themselves out of a tournament. There can be mixed reviews of the squad chosen by the Proteas for the T20 World Cup 2022, but to be fair, the selectors have picked the best among the options they had. South Africa have a great opportunity to shed the chokers tag in Australia by showing the world that they can not just compete, but dominate and be world champions as well. This team has that potential. Whether they can go beyond the mundane is what remains to be seen.

Threats: Lack of success in ICC events

Carrying on from the previous point, their history of disappointments in ICC events stands as a major threat in their way again. Right from the time they made a comeback to international cricket in 1991, they have had their share of poor luck – be it the rain rule in the 1992 World Cup, the 1999 tie or the 2003 D/L blunder. In the T20 World Cup, last year their campaign was hampered by the De Kock ‘knee’ controversy. It definitely hurt them amid a big event. Can South Africa have the fortune in their favour for a change?

South Africa T20 World Cup 2022 squad: Temba Bavuma (c), Quinton de Kock, Heinrich Klaasen, Reeza Hendricks, Keshav Maharaj, Aiden Markram, David Miller, Lungi Ngidi, Anrich Nortje, Wayne Parnell, Dwaine Pretorius, Kagiso Rabada, Rillee Rossouw, Tabraiz Shamsi, Tristan Stubbs. 

Standby Players: Bjorn Fortuin, Marco Jansen, Andile Phehlukwayo.

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