Proteas limited overs captain, Quinton de Kock, was pleased with the inclusion of up and coming cricketers into the team’s culture camp that ended on the weekend. The squad of 32 included the 16 contracted members of the national team as well as the High-Performance squad.
Speaking on the importance of the camp, he said:
“I think it’s been really good. We’ve had a lot of good chats which I think the team needed. Everyone is leaving feeling a lot better about the environment and about themselves. A lot of guys got things off their back, it was something that this team needed.
“We feel a lot more comfortable as a team going forward, which was needed… we’re excited about going into the future now.”
De Kock said he felt it was important for youngsters to be exposed to the team’s environment before they are selected into the national team to avoid them feeling as though they need to play catch up once they finally arrive. The 27-year-old wicket-keeper-batsman was pleased with the ease with which the new players integrated with the contracted squad as well as the regular features within the team and was even more impressed with the contribution they made in the important conversations that arose regarding the future of the team and its new identity.
“In this environment, even though you’re contracted it doesn’t mean that you’re guaranteed to play, so I think it was important that the up and coming players needed to be there with the squad. This is professional sport and we’re trying to play the best team that we can. If a younger guy is performing and he gets an opportunity, it doesn’t help that he hasn’t been here and he doesn’t know anything.
“We’ve seen what they’ve done in the franchise system and we know there’s a potential future for them in the team, so it was important for them to come here. It was great to learn some views from the younger guys and help them understand the situation with the Proteas and how we want to go about things.”
One of the main talking points of the camp was the team’s performance and how its newly established identity should influence how they go about their on-field work. De Kock is satisfied with the consensus reached as well as the plans that have been documented regarding the new Proteas’ way. He is confident that integrating the identified missing elements in their current style of play will yield positive results when international cricket resumes for South Africa.
“We are human and we make mistakes,” he continued. “We’re trying to get better in what we’re doing in our professions, that’s why we got together. I can’t promise results but I can promise that we’ll get better and we are learning, which will give us the best chance of getting better results.
“We’ve realized we play a certain brand of cricket and that we are missing one or two elements in our game and we’ve come together and identified the areas we can be better at. We don’t want to change anything, just be better in certain elements in our game as Proteas in the way that we play our cricket. There’s a lot of new guys and guys are still learning which is why it was important for us to have these chats so they can learn about these things going forward,” De Kock concluded.
The camp was aimed at bringing together players as well as the coaching and support staff of the national and High-Performance teams to align on objectives and plot the road ahead with a new cricket season not too far from beginning. Topics under discussion included the Proteas’ team identity in their capacity as representatives of our diverse nation, the team environment as well as its performance both on and off the field.
Proteas team culture camp squad:
Aiden Markram (Momentum Multiply Titans), Andile Phehlukwayo (Hollywoodbets Dolphins), Anrich Nortje (Warriors), Beuran Hendricks (Imperial Lions), Bjorn Fortuin (Imperial Lions), Daryn Dupavillon (Hollywoodbets Dolphins), David Miller (Hollywoodbets Dolphins), Dean Elgar (Momentum Multiply Titans), Dwaine Pretorius (Imperial Lions), George Linde (Cape Cobras), Glenton Stuurman (Warriors), Heinrich Klaasen (Momentum Multiply Titans), Janneman Malan (Cape Cobras), Jon-Jon Smuts (Warriors), Junior Dala (Momentum Multiply Titans), Kagiso Rabada (Imperial Lions), Keegan Petersen (Hollywoodbets Dolphins), Keshav Maharaj (Hollywoodbets Dolphins), Kyle Verryenne (Cape Cobras), Lungi Ngidi (Momentum Multiply Titans), Lutho Sipamla (Imperial Lions), Pieter Malan (Cape Cobras), Pite Van Biljon (VKB Knights), Quinton de Kock (Momentum Multiply Titans), Rassie van der Dussen (Imperial Lions), Reeza Hendricks (Imperial Lions), Rudi Second (Warriors), Senuran Muthusamy (Hollywoodbets Dolphins), Sisanda Magala (Imperial Lions), Tabraiz Shamsi (Momentum Multiply Titans), Temba Bavuma (Imperial Lions), Zubayr Hamza (Cape Cobras), Theunis de Bruyn (Momentum Multiply Titans).
Faf du Plessis was unable to join the team due to the birth of his second daughter, Zoey.