There’s a very good reason why Rassie van der Dussen needs to be quite familiar with what type of leader Quinton de Kock is: he’s his deputy for the upcoming T20 series against India.
De Kock, generally perceived as a free-spirited and instinctive player, has steadily risen in estimation as an international captain after unexpectedly being handed a temporary role in Sri Lanka last year.
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12 months later, the 26-year-old needs to guide a team in transition.
“Quinton is one of those guys who lead by example,” Van der Dussen, himself fairly quickly promoted to a leadership position, said on Wednesday.
“He doesn’t always say a lot, but when he speaks, he says really valuable things. You get guys who talk a lot and some who don’t. Quinny is a guy that prefers to lead from the front.
“He takes action and we respect him for that. Everyone is familiar with the type of player he is. He’s won a lot of games for South Africa. I also think that having the captain’s armband on will bring even more out of him. He wants to to well in India, always. We’re gearing up to support him with that mission.”
Much like the Springboks, who’ve also placed a premium acclimitasing well in advance for the World Cup in Japan, the Proteas also believe being in picturesque Dharamshala a week beforehand is proving valuable.
Another factor is the fact that the Proteas have fond memories of the city at the foot of the Himalayas.
Their previous visit yielded a thrilling seven-wicket victory after they chased down a target of 200.
The problem, however, is that only David Miller and Kagiso Rabada remain part of the XI that experienced that high.
“You’ve got to look at conditions and tap into the knowledge of men like David and Quinny, who’ve played a lot of IPL cricket here,” said Van der Dussen.
“A lot of us will have our first experience here, and we’ll look to feed off them. We’ve got to use everything we have against a very strong Indian side.”