Temba Bavuma, the captain of South Africa’s white ball team, said on Thursday that he was upset that his nation’s new Twenty20 league did not draw a bid. At a press conference before the South African team’s departure for a one-day and T20 international tour of India, which will be followed by the T20 World Cup in Australia, he admitted: “I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t unhappy.” “I feel disappointed and let down,” he said. “As much as I’d like to speak more about it, it’s probably not the right time. Our focus now is on India and the World Cup.”
Only Bavuma and the all-arounder Andile Phehlukwayo of the team travelling to India were not purchased during the SA20 auction. None of the other members of the current national squad were purchased for less than 1.5 million rand, despite the fact that both had set a basic price of 850,000 rand (US $50,000). Fast bowler Sisanda Magala and batsman Donavon Ferreira, two players not included in the visiting group, also attracted purchasers. “One expected to play a role in the tournament,” said Bavuma. “But it’s not just me, it’s Andile too, who has played a lot of white-ball cricket for South Africa.”
It was vital to keep the league and the national team distinct, according to coach Mark Boucher, whose position will end after the World Cup. “He (Bavuma) is our leader and we back him in this team like you can’t believe,” said Boucher. “What happens in leagues and auctions — you can’t control that. “From a Proteas perspective, we back him 100 percent. Going into a massive tournament like the World Cup he will be a massive part of our team.” Beginning with a T20 game on Wednesday in Thiruvananthapuram, South Africa will play three T20 and three one-day internationals in India.