Not even a pandemic can throw Proteas newbie Verreynne off goal of Windies Test

16 April 2020 - 11:18 By Khanyiso Tshwaku
Kyle Verreynne is eager to cement his place in the team after an impressive debut.
Kyle Verreynne is eager to cement his place in the team after an impressive debut.
Image: Frikkie Kapp/Gallo Images

Proteas newbie Kyle Verreynne understands how much work he needs to put in to thrive at international level‚ but right now he has a Test debut among his immediate targets.

While the novel coronavirus (Covid-19) has suspended cricket around the world‚ South Africa’s next Test assignment will be the West Indies at the end of July. There’s no red-ball cricket globally for any South African or West Indian player to prepare for the series‚ but Verreynne’s goals won’t be shifted by the pandemic.

The lockdown extension‚ until April 30‚ means Verreynne can’t work on his game‚ but he hopes that the preseason and winter camps will give him the requisite preparation for the overseas tours if they indeed take place.

South Africa also had a difficult and transitional summer where South Africa lost the home Test series to England under new team director Mark Boucher.

“Having played in the ODI side‚ I know I need to continue to work hard to keep my place there and continue to contribute to the one-day team. I definitely want to play Test cricket. In the winter tours and preseason‚ I’m going to put a lot of work into my red-ball game so I can push to get into the Test team‚” Verreynne said.

Verreynne‚ a consistent scorer for the Cape Cobras in all formats‚ was on the sidelines for the limited overs leg of the England series. The 22-year-old who went to the same school as Jacques Kallis (Wynberg Boy’s High) said the time he spent in the squad during the England series equipped him for his debut series against Australia. He made 48‚ three and 50 as South Africa whitewashed the visitors in the 50-over section of the limited overs tour after losing the T20 series 2-1.

“People would think not getting a game during the England series would have been a disappointment‚ but for me‚ it was one of the best things that could have happened to me because I got to interact with the players and experience how it feels to be part of an international squad‚” Verreynne said.

“When training with the guys‚ I got to understand the level of intensity at which they operated at. I wasn’t playing‚ but those few weeks with the team where I learnt and picked up on many things‚ I was prepared for the Australia series.”

Verreynne also wants to win trophies for the Cape Cobras after little went right for them in the 2019-20 summer.

The Cobras were bottom of the Momentum 1-Day Cup table with two wins from 10 games. Verreynne played in four of those matches with 83 runs at 20.75. The Cobras didn’t fare much better in the red-ball tournament with no wins‚ six draws and two losses to finish bottom. Verreynne‚ though‚ was productive in his seven matches with 551 runs from 11 innings at 55.10 with two 100’s and three 50’s.

“From a domestic perspective‚ I really want to win a trophy with the Cape Cobras. That’s something I haven’t done with the franchise. I hope I can contribute towards the Cobras winning a trophy this season.”