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Mpongwana, Bird attending CSA spin and batting camp in Durban

The Cricket South Africa (CSA) High Performance Department is hosting a spin-batting camp from 25-28 July 2022 in Durban.

The annual spin camp, which is part of CSA’s objectives to build a stronger cricket pipeline, usually takes place in India and aims to introduce most of the youngsters to international spin play.

CSA, in conjunction with provincial coaches around the country selected a group of promising young players in the system to participate in the camp.

Experienced senior players were also called up to provide an eye-opening experience for all players.

The camp also forms part of the High-Performance’s talent identification program. Players that have come through the SA U19 system are called up in order to promote and accelerate their learnings, in a bid to grow the game from the grassroots.

“The camp will be a wonderful opportunity for our identified young cricketers to enhance their batting and spin bowling skills,” said CSA High Performance Manager, Vincent Barnes.

“We have called up our experienced spinners to make for a well-balanced team. I believe that this camp will prove highly beneficial to everyone involved.”

Coach, Malibongwe Maketa commented: “One of the negative effects of COVID-19 was that for the past three years, our teams could not travel to the India where spin is more favourable. Seeing that we play so much cricket in the subcontinent, it is very crucial that we expose our spinners to the subcontinent conditions.

“It was important for us not to get left behind with our spin play, hence we’ve come to Durban. We have ensured that we tailormade the wickets to suit spin and challenge our players.

“Experienced coaches will be assisting them in not only technically playing spin, but also having the strategy to deal with a spinning ball.

“Their growth will be monitored to ensure that we provide a continuous learning process for our players,” said Maketa.

Coach, Neil McKenzie also shared his views on the objectives of the camp and what it means for these players going forward.

“CSA has identified the opportunity to get our players to play spin better. The earlier we can get our players to understanding what they need to do when playing and/or against spin, the better it is for us to understand and nurture the talent for the future of our national teams.

“With most of our senior spinners away in England, this provides an opportunity for more players to come in and get exposed to our spin play and methods.

“A lot of information is being shared with experienced coaches, and the combination of young and experienced talent. At times, one learns more off senior players more than coaches.

“We believe this will provide the players with confidence to thrive and apply pressure when playing against spin; the spinners getting better with their game and batters dealing with spin conditions,” McKenzie concluded.

Spin-batting Camp 2022:

Batters: Mihlali Mpongwana (Six Gun Grill Western Province), Andile Simelane (Hollywoodbets Dolphins), Valentine Kitime (Gbets Rocks), Sinethemba Qeshile (Gbets Warriors), Patrick Kruger (ITEC Knights), Jonathan Bird (Six Gun Grill Western Province), Raynard van Tonder (ITEC Knights), Joshua Richards (Imperial Lions), Jordan Hermann (Gbets Warriors), Jiveshan Pillay (Momentum Multiply Titans), Ruan De Swart (Hollywoodbets Dolphins), Levert Manje (Imperial Lions).

Spinners: Bryce Parsons (Hollywoodbets Dolphins), Tumelo Tlhokwe (North West Dragons), Tshepo Ntuli (Northern Cape Heat), Odirile Modimokoane (Hollywoodbets Dolphins), Prenelan Subrayen (Hollywoodbets Dolphins), Jason Raubenheimer (ITEC Knights), Caleb Seleka (North West Dragons), Tsepo Ndwandwa (Gbets Warriors), Smangaliso Nhlebela (Momentum Multiply Titans), Bjorn Fortuin (Imperial Lions), Kurt Mannikam (KZN-Inland Tuskers).

Coaches: Neil McKenzie, Shukri Conrad, Malibongwe Maketa, Paul Adams, Mthandeki Tshabalala.