Rabada in Bio-Secure Environment‚ but Proteas cautious about playing him for second Test

30 December 2020 - 12:31
Kagiso Rabada of SA during the T20 International against England at Newlands on November 27 2020 in Cape Town.
Kagiso Rabada of SA during the T20 International against England at Newlands on November 27 2020 in Cape Town.
Image: Ashley Vlotman/Gallo Images

Premier SA fast bowler Kagiso “KG” Rabada remains doubtful to play in the second and final Test match against Sri Lanka at the Wanderers in Johannesburg next week.

The 25-year-old Rabada‚ who missed the comprehensive innings and 45-run win in Centurion‚ has entered the Proteas’ Bio-Secure Environment (BSE) where he is recovering from a right adductor muscle strain injury.

“We don’t know if ‘KG’ is back yet. He has been out of it for quite some time‚” said Proteas coach Mark Boucher, adding Rabada will be monitored in the coming days.

“Because his name is KG Rabada‚ you would want to play him but we have to manage him and his loads so we don’t put him in a high-risk zone. In the next three days we will see where he is at. We will manage his progress and if we have to play then great.

“If we have to wait for the first Test against Pakistan‚ that will be it. We don’t know yet if he will be available.”

Still on injuries‚ Boucher said he doesn’t know what happened to Sri Lanka who had three of their frontline bowlers pulling out of the match with muscle injuries to weaken them.

“I am not too sure what Sri Lanka have done in their set-up‚ I just know it’s very difficult in these times to prepare. We have not had a lot of cricket in the franchise set-up because matches were postponed or cancelled.

“We were tested with regards to workloads‚ so we have had to think outside the box continuously to try and get the workloads up for these guys to be able to bowl 20 overs in a day.

“All we have done is to recognise we are going to need a big squad to get through this season.

“Sometimes you want to play a guy for the sake of playing him because he’s maybe your top bowler, but there needs to be consideration for the workload he’s had. From the mental and physical side‚ that type of stuff comes into play so you have to take emotions out of it and make smart cricketing decisions.

“For instance, with a guy like KG‚ there were times we wanted to play him. But he  has to get his workloads up so he goes into a Test match where he is not at high risk of getting injured.

“If we push him to play and he is not ready we will be doing ourselves and him an injustice.

“I am not sure what Sri Lanka have done. I’ll probably have a drink with their coach Mickey Arthur to try learn from them. It is just treating these times with caution and having a big squad.”