Marchant de Lange called up to South African squad for last two Tests vs India
South Africa have added Marchant de Lange to their Test squad for the last two Test against India as cover for injury doubt Dale Steyn. Steyn was absent from the South African bowling attack in the second Test in Bengaluru with a groin strain, and it is yet to be seen whether he recovers full match fitness in time for the Nagpur Test which starts next Wednesday.
De Lange used to be a javelin thrower prior to his cricketing career, and this converts into an ability to attain impressive pace around 145-150 km/hr from a short run-up. He was handed his Test debut in 2011, returning stunning figures of 7/81 in his very first international bowling innings, against Sri Lanka in Durban.
The 25-year-old De Lange has played two Tests for South Africa, the last of which was in Wellington in 2012. He was part of the T20 squad that won the series in India earlier on the tour.
"At the moment we only have three fit seamers in Morne Morkel, Kagiso Rabada and Kyle Abbott, so with Dale still struggling with a groin injury we decided to bring Marchant in as cover so we are prepared in case one of the three breaks down," South Africa coach Russell Domingo told reporters.
150kmph fast bowlers always good value: Domingo
It remains to be seen whether De Lange gets a spot in the team, in a series which has been dominated by the slower bowlers, but as his coach says – pure and raw pace has its value on its own.
Domingo said, "Marchant's biggest strength is pace, if the ball does start to reverse swing his pace through the air brings him into the contest.
"Even though his performances back home have been a bit inconsistent, we do know that as an impact player he is a guy that can turn the game with a good spell. Guys that can bowl at 150 km per hour will always be good value."
On his team’s chances of making a comeback in the series, which they currently trail 0-1, the coach sounded confident and took confidence from a previous South Africa team’s resurgence at the same stadium.
“We’ve done it before. We know that we are still in the contest with two matches to play, the wickets are definitely going to produce results.
“I wasn’t there on that tour but I remember South Africa being 6/2 and Kallis getting 160 and Amla getting 250 to give the team a comfortable win in the backend.”