T20 World Cup: Temba Bavuma on making and chasing history for South Africa

South Africa is trying to make history in the T20 World Cup, playing their first ever match against Zimbabwe on Tuesday. The young captain of South African cricket team Temba Bavuma has made a great impact on his country’s return to international sport since his debut last year.,

Dubai International Cricket Stadium is the venue. Date: October 26th, 11:00 a.m. BST
Radio 5 Live Sports will broadcast the event. Additional remarks. Sport’s website and app provide live written commentary, in-game footage, and video highlights.

He was the first black African batsman to play Test cricket for South Africa, as well as the first to achieve a Test century and lead the side.

Temba Bavuma has created a path that might be surpassed when he becomes the first player to lead the Proteas to a World Cup triumph.

South Africa are competing in their eighth Men’s T20 World Cup, with their greatest results coming in 2009 and 2014, when they reached the semi-finals.

With South African cricket in the midst of a traumatic period in which the national administration lurched from one crisis to the nextexternal-link while allegations of racism were leveled by former black players against their white team-mates, winning the World Cup – against all odds, it must be said – would be a welcome boost for the game in this country.

What a tale it would be if Bavuma, who is just 5ft 3in tall, rises to the heights of Siya Kolisi, who led the Springboks to victory at the Rugby World Cup in Japan two years ago, sparking widespread jubilation on the team’s return.

Winning the T20 World Cup would be a significant accomplishment for an inexperienced side that entered the competition as the fifth-ranked T20 team in the world, according to the International Cricket Council. Bavuma, like almost half of the 15-man roster, will be competing in his debut international competition.

Bavuma recognizes that if his squad wants to win the world championship, they must ascend a big mountain. “Lifting the World Cup is the aim – that would be fantastic – but there’s a lot more work to be done before we get there,” he says to Sport.

“I don’t want to get ahead of myself by visualizing a rousing reception at the airport.”

Bavuma, a close friend of Kolisi’s, has learned the secrets of the rugby team’s success.

“We exchange ideas in terms of the many sports, the various leadership problems, and the expectations that come with participating in such a huge event,” Bavuma explains.

Siya Kolisi with the World CupWhen Siya Kolisi was named captain of South Africa’s rugby team in 2018, he made history as the country’s first black captain.

“We’ve discussed his being in his leadership role. It’s the casual conversations that make it so enjoyable. He’s a modest man, so he’ll never claim entire credit for what the Springboks have accomplished.

“I draw a lot of motivation and confidence from the fact that he took over a team that was perhaps not in the greatest of shape and was able to rally the troops and win the World Cup via his leadership.”

Bavuma is a confident and vocal captain who has guided the Lions to two domestic T20 championships and one first-class crown. In his debut season as captain, he won the T20 Challenge final with a pivotal 61-ball maiden T20 century.

Bavuma had also had a strong start to his international white-ball career, scoring 113 against Ireland in 2016 to become just the second South African to score a century in his first one-day appearance.

Bavuma was given the captaincy by Graeme Smith, South Africa’s most successful captain and currently Cricket South Africa (CSA) director of cricket, and selection convenor Victor Mpitsang.

When Smith announced his appointment in March, he remarked, “We’ve always known about Temba’s leadership skills.”

“We’ve taken note of how he’s been conducting himself in the group and the expertise he offers. The nature of his tactical leadership at the Lions, as well as the comments we’ve heard from inside the group, both from managers and coaches, has been quite encouraging.”

Bavuma claims that captaining South Africa was not on his bucket list. “It was never a goal of mine,” he admits. “It caught me off guard. When you’re a youngster, you always want to play for your nation and live your dream. It’s a plus to be the team’s captain.”

Bavuma also has the added responsibility of serving as a role model for young black cricketers. “It’s an extra duty,” he admits, “but it’s something I’ve learned to shoulder and take in stride.”

“It was a burden that proved to be a bit hefty early in my international leadership tenure. I’ve recently embraced it rather than fighting it. It’s become a little simpler to use.”

Temba BavumaIn 2014, Bavuma made his Test debut for South Africa against the West Indies.

To make things worse, a controversy developed in July surrounding South Africa coach Mark Boucher, who was accused of racism by ex-spinner Paul Adams at the CSA’s Social Justice and Nation-building hearings.

Adams testified in oath that previous teammates racially assaulted him, including Boucher, who reportedly sung a team song with a derogatory phrase in it.

The charges were “hurtful and factually false,” according to Boucher, who apologized “unreservedly” for any inappropriate behaviour, real or perceived.

“It was outside noise, but it was the sort of noise that as a squad we couldn’t ignore,” Bavuma, who raised the problem with Boucher, adds. It made its way into the team, and we had a discussion about it.

“We met with Mark to have a better understanding of the charges so that we could move ahead as a team.” We can’t believe everything we hear in the news. People must be given the chance to tell their side of the story.

“This group is in a lot better position now. The conversations we had allowed us to perform some serious reflection and consider how we might improve things if necessary.”

Despite losing to Australia in the last over of their World Cup opener on Saturday, South Africa will meet defending champions West Indies in Dubai on Tuesday.

They’ve won their last three T20 series, which were all played away from home, against the West Indies, Ireland, and Sri Lanka.

“Recently, our performances have been quite excellent,” Bavuma admits. “We’ll take their trust and strive to keep moving forward with the momentum we’ve earned.”

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