If England employed Ottis Gibson, then he’s special: Jacques Kallis

The South African legend also mentioned that Dale Steyn will be back to full fitness soon.

Jacques Kallis
Jacques Kallis. (Photo by Neville Hopwood/Getty Images for Professional Sports Group)

Jacques Kallis believes that the new head coach of South Africa, Ottis Gibson, can pull off amazing results during his tenure with the Proteas. The South African legend believes that Gibson is indeed a special candidate, taking into consideration that England have formerly employed him. The former West Indian cricketer will take charge in few days time.

The second highest century maker in the history of Test cricket, Kallis believes this team has the talent to do brilliant things. He reckons all they need to do is materialize their plans with perfection on the field. Gibson has already requested the team selectors to ensure all the national team players avail themselves for the or opening round of the Sunfoil Series starting next Tuesday.

“I’ve heard many good things about ‘Oti’. I’ve never worked under him, but if the England side has employed him, then you know there is something special about him,” Kallis said on Tuesday.

“It’s like a ‘refresh’ button has been hit. I’m excited about the season, I’m sure all the players are. There is no reason why this team can’t achieve the goals they want… the talent is there. It’s a matter of putting it together on the field,” the 41-year-old said.

I believe Steyn will be back soon

Kallis is also the head coach of the Cape Town Knight Riders in the T20 Global League, which is set to commence this November. Their franchise chose premium fast bowler Dale Steyn as their local Marquee player and considering the clouds over his fitness haven’t vanished as yet, it was a brave call from the management.

Having said that, Kallis believes Steyn will be back soon. He mentioned that Steyn has been bowling seven overs a day at this moment and is slowly getting back to full fitness. “Having chosen him for the Knight Riders, I’ve kept a close eye on him… I was under a little bit of pressure from the owners asking ‘Are you sure?’

“He’s busy bowling seven overs a day at the moment and doesn’t want to go into a four-day game upfront. He’s worried about bowling 18 overs in a day – three times six-over spells – so I think he just wants to ease into it a little bit more and make sure he’s 100 percent fit,” said Kallis.

Judging players after one tour is a tough call

South Africa crumbled badly at the hands of England in the Test series recently. One of the first tasks Gibson will have to deal with is the top order issues, which needs to be sorted as soon as possible for the betterment of the team. Gibson is known to take harsh calls sometimes and it’ll be interesting to see if he shows the cold shoulder to anyone in the side.

Kallis believes it’s a tough call to disregard or judge a player after just one tour. He said that the coach’s fresh ideas should be respected having opined he wouldn’t prefer chopping and changing regularly.

“It is tough at the top of the order in England, so to judge a guy only on that is a tough call,” said Kallis. I’m not one for chopping and changing too much, but the coach may have some fresh ideas and want some fresh young guys. It’s about what the coach and selectors feel – where do they want to take the team, and also the balance of the side,” He stated.

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