Kirsten stated that all bowling attacks have to deal with bad days and injuries at some point in time
South Africa head coach Gary Kirsten has defended the national team’s bowling attack for their relatively poor performance throughout the three-Test series against Australia.
Many of the South African bowlers succumbed to injuries during the second Test at Adelaide, where pace bowler Vernon Philander was ruled out due to a “lower lumbar muscle strain” and veteran all-rounder Jacques Kallis left the field with a hamstring injury.
Even the trustworthy Dale Steyn left the field for a short period due to a leg strain and all these injuries have served as the basis for many cricket pundits to question whether South Africa are overworking and relying to much on their ‘best in the world’ pace attack.
However, Kirsten feels as if the injuries and lacklustre bowling can be attributed to the amount of preparation time the bowlers had between each Test match.
“First of all, we had four great days of prep leading into this game but it’s always a thing that will come up,” Kirsten said. “Often when we’re home for a test series we send players home and they come back two days ahead to prepare.
“There’s no exact science to it. You can always find a way to criticise in some department. Every team goes through injuries at some point in time. I don’t think we’re unique to that. The fact that it happened on one day, I certainly don’t have the answers to that. It was unfortunate.”
Kirsten also believes that Kallis made a smart decision by leaving the field as soon as he felt some discomfort in his hamstring.
“(Kallis) made a wise decision,” Kirsten added. “As soon as he felt a twinge he got off the park quickly, obviously from a batting perspective it’s going to be important – these days we don’t have runners, so it’s going to be important that he can bat for us as well.”