South African head coach Mark Boucher was excited about the prospect of playing India in the longest format when they come to visit the Protean shores next month. He termed it as an opportunity to grow as a team against one of the best in Tests.
Virat Kohli and co. will embark on a South African tour next month, which comprises 3 Tests, 3 ODIs, and 4 T20Is. The last time they visited South Africa, they won the ODI and T20I series but fell short by a 1-2 margin in the Test format. This time around, they will have a great chance to register a series win, and Boucher was wary of the threat they posed.
“Unscathed is a particularly interesting word to use, but we’re playing a team at home that’s up there with the world’s best. If you look at where we are as a Test group, we’re still growing and we’re still trying to find our feet with certain positions. It’s going to be a good challenge and a good test for us.“
“We did well in the West Indies, but we haven’t played a Test at home in a while. It’s not about getting unscathed, but going out there with an opportunity to do something special and beat India. If we don’t, we’ll obviously learn the lessons and come out as a better cricket team,” Boucher was quoted as saying to News24.
Can’t look past the very important Test series – Mark Boucher
Boucher mentioned that there are crucial matches against the Netherlands coming up that will count for the qualification process for the 2023 ODI World Cup. However, the impact of the Test series against India is also quite large, according to the coach.
“The focus has shifted to the Netherlands because there are games there that we need to win in order to qualify for the World Cup. However, we can’t look past the very important Test series against India, from where there’s the white ball stuff against India,” Boucher concluded.
South Africa has a packed schedule coming up following their exit from the T20 World Cup taking place in the UAE.