South Africa right-arm pacer Duanne Olivier has said that the upcoming series against India will be the biggest series of his career as he will be playing against world-class players. He added that he will be bowling to Virat Kohli which will be a tough but exciting challenge for him.
Olivier made his Test debut in 2017 and has bagged 48 wickets the last Test he played was back in 2019 and since then he hasn’t played Test cricket for South Africa. However, he has received a surprise recall and has been named in the South Africa squad for the Test series against India which will begin on December 26.
Olivier speaking to Cricket South Africa’s media wing said:
“This will be the biggest series of my career against world-class players and it’s an exciting challenge. I need to bowl to Virat Kohli. It will be tough but it will also be exciting, probably I will be bowling to one of the top four batters in world cricket, For me, it will be like making a statement to them that we are here to compete and are not going to roll over. For me, it’s very important to start that first punch.”
He added that South Africa need to use the conditions to their advantage against India and the grass will be shaved at SuperSport Park, Centurion in the boxing day Test. He asserted:
“We need to use conditions to our advantage. We can’t get carried away. It might seam and might have bounce. I reckon some grass will be shaved. With a lot of rain being forecast, it’s not ideal for preparation.”
When I Came Back I Felt Very Welcomed – Duanne Olivier
Olivier had previously taken the KOLPAK route to represent Yorkshire and he harboured desires of playing for the England National Cricket Team However, with Britain departing from the European Union, Olivier’s hopes were crushed and he came back to South Africa and started playing domestic cricket. It was being told that the reason he decided to migrate was because of the selection policy where there was a mandatory quota for players of colour.
Meanwhile, talking about his recall Duanne Olivier said that it was a “massive surprise for him” and he did not expect it. He said:
“It was a massive surprise as I didn’t expect a call up at all. When I came back I felt very welcomed, I haven’t been here for three years. So it’s a long time and it’s special for any person to play for the country. You reconnect those relationships with people you have played with three years ago. You get to know everyone at a different level. At the end of the day, the job is to keep things simple.”
Talking about his achievements with South Africa, Olivier said that it was his past and he is not trying to look at the past. He stated:
“I think expectation is also quite high but whatever I have achieved three years back is past. I am not trying to look at the past. I am a different person and this is a different squad, so you try to focus on what you want to do as three Test matches are massive.”
Duanne Olivier also mentioned that he has matured a lot and has become a different player. He said:
“I am a different player. Firstly, I am more mature, more grown-up now.”
Olivier further on a lighter note added that he had framed his baggy Test cap and he will have to get a new one.
“UK has helped me a lot, perfecting that fuller length, because it can come across as floaty and I wasn’t as consistent. I am still working on it and I am not going to get it right every single time, I didn’t expect I would be playing again. I had framed my baggy. If I am playing, I will ask for a new one. Otherwise, I will have to break the frame,” he burst out laughing.
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