‘Veteran’ Rassie van der Dussen urges Proteas batting unit to deliver

21 September 2019 - 14:56 By Khanyiso Tshwaku
Rassie van der Dussen of the Proteas looking in good spirits during training.
Rassie van der Dussen of the Proteas looking in good spirits during training.
Image: Isuru Sameera Peiris/Gallo Images

Rassie van der Dussen may be 30 years old and yet to finish a year in international cricket‚ but carries the air of a veteran.

Rassie van der Dussen may be 30 years old and yet to finish a year in international cricket‚ but carries the air of a veteran.

He was one of the mainstays of South Africa's batting in a year where the batting unit has routinely failed.

SA's batting will need to rock in Bengaluru on Sunday in the third T20 that they have to win to square the series.

The youthful nature of SA's squad isn't a big worry for Van Der Dussen as they know they have to deliver at the M. Chinnaswamy Stadium.

“We've got a young squad but we're coming here to compete and we're coming here to win in the traditional South African way.

"We train hard and we play hard. Even though we've got some young players in the squad‚ we're not going to stand back‚ regardless of whether the results go your way or not‚” Van Der Dussen said.

“On the day‚ you're never sure what's going to happen but when we came here‚ we knew it was going to be tough. India's one of the strongest teams in the world and we knew that. We've got one more chance to level the series.”

Van Der Dussen has been in the domestic system for just over 10 years‚ but his break came earlier this year after piling on a mountain of runs.

Former Proteas coach Ottis Gibson and former Proteas convenor of selectors Linda Zondi took a punt on him and for Van der Dussen‚ it's paid off.

“It's been an unbelievable 12 to 14 months for me. I was just grateful to get the opportunity and I must thank Linda Zondi and Ottis Gibson for giving me a chance in a World Cup year four months before the tournament started‚” Van Der Dussen said.

“It was a massive call to make and I always said if I could play one game for my country‚ it's a dream come true and I'll continue to see it like that every time I play. It remains a proud moment for me. The challenge now is to maintain the form that I have and help the team win games.”

South Africa started well in Mohali on Wednesday but fizzled out when it counted in the back end of the innings.

While India only had 150 to chase‚ India's gun top order of Rohit Sharma‚ Shikhar Dhawan and Virat Kohli showed them how its down.

Van Der Dussen said they needed to keep composure‚ trust their systems and be at their best.

“We were honest with ourselves in that to get a win‚ we need to be at our best against India's best players. We got Rohit out early but Shikhar was in and we didn't have the score to put pressure on him and Virat.

"That partnership put us under pressure‚ but come the game‚ I hope we can play the way we normally can play and execute our plans the way we normally can‚” Van Der Dussen said.

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