Image courtesy of: ESPNcricinfo
Heinrich Klaasen has made it clear that fellow wicketkeeper-batsman Quinton de Kock doesn’t need to fret about losing his spot in the national team.
De Kock is currently nursing a wrist injury, which ruled him out of the limited overs series against India. Prior to getting injured, the 25-year-old had struggled with the bat as he averaged 11.83 in the three-Test series and 27 in the two ODIs he played.
Klaasen was called up as De Kock’s replacement and made his limited overs debut in the ongoing series against India.
The 26-year-old averaged 36.66 in the four ODIs he played, but his best innings came during the fourth ODI in Johannesburg, where he thumped a 27-ball 43 to lead the Proteas to victory.
In the ongoing Twenty20 series, Klaasen is averaging 42.50 and has a strike-rate of 223.68. He played a pivotal role in levelling the series at 1-1 on Wednesday as he smashed a superb 69.
Despite enjoying a lot of success thus far, Klaasen reiterated that De Kock still remains South Africa’s go-to wicketkeeper-batsman.
“I think he’s a world class player. Our changing room definitely misses him, especially the top of the order. I don’t think he has anything to worry about,” he was quoted as saying by sacricketmag.com.
When asked how he has been able to counter India’s spin duo of Yuzvendra Chahal and Kuldeep Yadav, the Pretoria native said: “I face them quite a lot. Especially when I was playing amateur cricket, there were a couple of quality leggies when I started my career.
“I face Shaun von Berg at the Titans a lot as well. We always made a joke that I needed to end the other leggies careers so he can go up there. Tonight it worked perfectly. I tried to cash in as much as possible.”
Klaasen also admitted that his Man of the Match performance in the second Twenty20 International was better than the game-winning 43 he scored in the pink ODI at the Wanderers.
“This one definitely wins,” he said. “It was on my home ground which is something you dream about as a young kid, to play and win a game for your country on your home ground.”