Don’t see India making a comeback in series, says former South Africa quick Meyrick Pringle

Don’t see India making a comeback in series, says former South Africa quick Meyrick Pringle

Pringle, 51, played four Tests and 17 ODIs between 1992-96 and will be remembered for his 4 for 11 against the West Indies in the 1992 World Cup.

Meyrick Pringle bowling
Meyrick Pringle. (Photo Source: Getty Images)

After losing the first Test in Cape Town by 72 runs, India face South Africa in the second game of the three-match series at Centurion starting Saturday, January 13. Virat Kohli’s men had bowled excellently to put the hosts under pressure in the first Test but the batsmen failed to rise to the occasion. Can India rectify their mistakes and make a comeback in the second match to make the series an interesting one?

CricTracker caught up with former South African pacer Meyrick Wayne Pringle on the eve of the second Test to get his views on the series and cricket in general. Pringle, 51, played four Tests and 17 ODIs between 1992-96 and will be remembered for his 4 for 11 against the West Indies in the 1992 World Cup in Australia which had left the Caribbeans devastated.

The man was also a part of the first-ever India-South Africa Test series in 1992 and was badly hit by a bouncer from Javagal Srinath in his eye which put him out of the game for a while. Pringle is busy coach and commentator now.

Here are edited excerpts from Pringle’s interview:

How would you rate the Indian team’s performance in the Cape Town Test? Was there a lapse in the team selection as many are saying?

I was on a holiday in Thailand during the first Test, so did not see much of it until witnessing the highlights when I got back to SA. The team India selected, according to me, was not wrong. The problem in the first Test was the wicket as it didn’t play up to its normal way. Both sides battled in the second innings.

What do you think about Virat Kohli as a Test captain, particularly abroad?

There are all sorts of captains around the world. Virat shows his aggression and emotions which to me is brilliant. Others may look at it differently. He is a great captain.

Meyrick Pringle
Meyrick Pringle of South Africa. (Photo by Clive Mason/Getty Images)

South Africa did great as a bowling unit in the first Test but how would you rate SA as a batting side? Do they miss batsmen like Gary Kirsten and Jacques Kallis in their ranks?

They most certainly miss players like Kirsten and Kallis but they are not replaceable. SA have nothing to worry about when it comes to the batting line up though the biggest problem is politics, which means there is a quota system in place. Many greats around the world have said that if SA picked their best side on merit, they would have been No. 1 in the world.

As many as 18 wickets fell for just 200 runs in Cape Town on Day 4. Is it a good advertisement for batting in Tests? Are batsmen today less equipped to play long innings?

I played for many years in Cape Town. In cloudy conditions, the ball moves all over the show. If you put the ball in the right area and lines, you will pick up wickets, which was done by both the bowling sides. Many of the catches behind were balls in the right areas and the ball did the rest.

What are your thoughts on India‘s chances of making a comeback in the series? 

I can’t see them making a comeback, Pretoria and Johannesburg wickets are quick and bouncy, India will be tested.

SA’s fast bowlers did excellently in the first Test. Being a former fast bowler yourself, do you feel the legacy of the Donalds, Pollocks and Steyns are in safe hands?

South African Cricket has many fast bowlers in the pipeline. Its bowling is in good hands.