South Africa might go in with three-pronged spin attack for Sunday's clash against Australia
Imran Tahir had bowled career-best figures of 7 for 45 against the West Indies to put South Africa on top in the ongoing tri-series.
Riding high on an Imran Tahir-inspired victory against the West Indies, South Africa is planning to unleash a three-pronged spin attack against Australia on Sunday, the Proteas bowling coach Claude Henderson revealed on Sunday. While Aaron Phangiso and Tabraiz Shamsi, the other two spinners in the South African squad, have already featured in the ongoing tri-series, today’s match at Barbados could well see all three in action at the same time.
"Barbados I've been told is a better batting wicket with a bit more bounce," Henderson said. "I also believe the boundaries are also a bit bigger. Who knows, do we go in with three spinners, is that an option?”
Tahir bowled one of the most memorable spells in ODI cricket history picking up 7 for 45 against the host nation to place the Proteas well in contention for a spot in the final. Henderson is hopeful that the team management does utilise the spinners to maximum potential by playing all three of them together.
“Imran Tahir, in my opinion, has shown why he is the number one ODI bowler in world cricket. He has got great variation, he takes wickets and can bowl on any surface, especially when the wickets don't spin, that is when he is dangerous,” Henderson said.
"I am always in favour of spin, I feel sides don't really prepare that well against spin like they do for pace bowling. It's nice to have this variation for this series. We are very fortunate to have a great mixture of spin bowling," he added.
While Tahir’s abilities are well documented, Henderson was full of praise for Phangiso, the 32-year-old left-arm spinner who has remained a threat despite having to tweak his action after being reported for suspect action just prior to the 2016 World T20.
"Aaron Phangiso went through a tough time changing his action before the T20 World Cup, I still can't believe how he did it in four days, these things normally take two to three months. He bowled beautifully against the West Indies in Guyana, it was unfortunate that we lost that game. He is a crafty left-arm spinner, he has a lot of experience, shows great control, understands the conditions, fits in the unit and does what the captain asks of him," he said.
Henderson also heaped praise on Shamsi, the 26-year-old mystery bowler who rose to fame with his performances for RCB in the 2016 IPL, for the variation he brings into the spin attack.
"Tabraiz Shamsi has come in as a newcomer and gives us the variation as the china-man,” he said.