South Africa is facing a rough transitional phase both on and off the field. The Proteas, who once looked fierce and competitive, appears quiet and weak. There was a time when fans used to be sure that South Africa will at least reach the semi-final stage in any ICC tournament. These expectations were due to the presence of AB de Villiers, Jacques Kallis, Herschelle Gibbs, Graeme Smith, Dale Steyn and Morne Morkel.
However, things have changed. The young players have not been able to fit in perfectly and have struggled in ICC tournaments.
They were defeated in their last 5 T20I series, including one home series. The team entirely depends on their more experienced cricketers - Quinton de Kock and Faf du Plessis. However, Du Plessis failed to make an impact in the last couple of series and that has caused South Africa's downfall. With the T20 World Cup around the corner, the selectors will have a huge task on their hands to get the combination right.
So, let's have a look at the players who can find a place in the World Cup squad:
Top Order: Quinton de Kock, Temba Bavuma, Faf du Plessis, Janneman Malan, Aiden Markram
Quinton is the key at the top. The wicketkeeper-batsman has a knack of playing stylish shots from the start and dominate the bowlers. However, his recent form might concern the management.
The newly recruited white-ball skipper, Temba Bavuma is currently struggling with injury. But he will be raring to lead the side from the font.
Despite his age, South Africa will go for Faf du Plessis because of the amount of experience he holds. The former skipper looked in great form in the IPL and selectors would be hoping that he could replicate his form in the WC.
Aiden Markram is another batsman you cannot overlook. The batsman looked in good form against Pakistan. The same goes for Janneman Malan, who has shown his potential in the shorter format of the game.
Middle Order- Heinrich Klaasen, Van Biljon, David Miller, Phehlukwayo
Proteas have a new looking middle order, which is still under the trial run. Klaasen can play at no.4 as he possesses good international experience.
Miller is our number 6 pick as he is an experienced finisher, who is capable of taking the game away even in the worst situation. He also showed good form playing for Rajasthan Royals in the IPL this season.
At number 7, Phehlukwayo could come in. He is a bowling allrounder and can strike powerfully down the order. He has taken 39 wickets in 34 games in T20Is.
Bowlers- Kagiso Rabada, Lungi Ngidi, Anrich Nortje, Tabraiz Shamsi
South Africa's pace bowling has been their strength in recent years. They have some exceptional bowlers, who have proved themselves playing in international as well as domestic leagues.
Kagiso Rabada and Anrich Nortje are the pace express for the Proteas side. Last year, the duo played an important role in taking Delhi Capitals to the final of IPL took 50+ wickets combined.
Lungi Ngidi is another pacer, who has proved his mettle in the T20s. The fast bowler, who plays for CSK in IPL, has improved a lot and he might get a nod for the World Cup as well.
The Proteas also have a spin option in Tabraiz Shamsi, who has been exceptional in the last few months. Being a spinner in the shortest format is not easy but Shamsi has shown that he has the skills and temperament to perform on the big stage.
South Africa's Probable 15 for T20 World Cup:
Quinton de Kock(WK), Temba Bavuma (C), Faf du Plessis, Janneman Malan, Aiden Markram, Heinrich Klaasen, Van Biljon, George Linde, Phehlukwayo, Kagiso Rabada, Lungi Ngidi, Anrich Nortje, Tabraiz Shamsi, Rassi Van Der Dussen, David Miller