Home Sport Cricket Proteas top order could do with some Stubbs spice

Proteas top order could do with some Stubbs spice

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Almost every South African has never doubted the talent and power that Stubbs possesses as the country has watched the youngster hit long balls down in Gqeberha for the past three seasons.

Delhi Capitals’ Tristan Stubbs plays a shot during the Indian Premier League (IPL) Twenty20 cricket match against Lucknow Super Giants at the Arun Jaitley Stadium in New Delhi on May 14, 2024. Picture: Money SHARMA, AFP

Ongama Gcwabe

WATCHING Proteas youngster Tristan Stubbs bat for the Delhi Capitals in the IPL brought a smile to the faces of many South Africans as the T20 World Cup is right around the corner.

Almost every South African has never doubted the talent and power that Stubbs possesses as the country has watched the youngster hit long balls down in Gqeberha for the past three seasons.

However, what many Proteas fans would’ve been worried about, like with any powerful batter, is his ability to score runs against smart teams, captains and bowlers.

It is one thing to go out in the middle, swing at everything and hope it catches the middle of the bat.

That method almost never works against a smart bowler who has the advantage of video analysts to help them formulate plans to keep batters quiet.

All year, Stubbs has shown he is more than just a pinch-hitter or finisher.

He has shown that he has the ability to play all roles and be whatever the situation demands.

This season, he has played in all 14 IPL matches for Delhi and has showcased his wide array of shots.

He now plays reverse scoops and all types of sweep shots, in addition to the solid base of strokes with which he burst onto the scene.

In the 14 matches, Stubbs has batted at four, five and lower down the order. In each of the positions, the right-hander has had success as he put together 378 runs at an average of 54, with a strike rate of 191 this season.

With fellow Proteas batter Heinrich Klaasen in a rich vein of form for two straight years now, Stubbs’ progress makes the Proteas’ batting stocks even stronger.

The hottest question around the 23-year-old is where should coach Rob Walter position him in the batting order in the coming T20 World Cup in the US and the Caribbean?

Looking at Stubbs as a full package, what truly stands out is that he also has a really solid technique.

After all, it was his technique that impressed Test coach Shukri Conrad so much that he handed the youngster a Test debut last summer.

Because of his technique and ability to play any situation, Stubbs should bat as high as possible.

Stubbs is best used at No.4 behind Aiden Markram, who has made the No.3 position his own.

Which bowling unit in the world would be chuffed watching Stubbs walk in to bat at No.4, knowing that Klaasen will come in at five, followed by David Miller at six?

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