TELFORD VICE, Cape Town
IF SA thought they could shamble home to tea and sympathy in the wake of their failed World T20 campaign, they can think again.
“Clearly our team didn’t perform to expectation; we expected a lot more,” Cricket SA chief executive Haroon Lorgat said at SA’s return press conference in Johannesburg on Tuesday.
“I’m sure questions will be asked. We’re asking questions ourselves.
“We will need to do some sort of review. We will do it objectively and smartly. It’s not knee-jerk stuff. It’s not emotional stuff. We’ll do it properly. We’ll try to understand what we’re not doing.”
But there was no sign that anyone would jump without being pushed.
Asked if he wanted to continue as coach, Russell Domingo said: “Absolutely. It’s a massive honour and a massive privilege. Everybody wants to do it. It’s a big challenge for me – we’ve obviously not achieved what we set out to achieve.”
Lorgat offered Domingo breathing space: “To pre-empt that is premature. He’s got a contract in place. I don’t think I would want to speculate before getting down to the details.
“There’s no need for a rush into this. Let us settle down and take it with great consideration. We are talking of futures.”
Domingo’s current deal expires in April next year, before the Champions Trophy.
Faf du Plessis did not face similar questioning over his future as captain, perhaps an indication that the cricketminded public are blaming the coaching staff – and particular Domingo, who has been dogged by doubters over his lack of high level playing experience – for SA’s poor display.
But Du Plessis was put on the spot about the view he expressed firmly before the tournament that AB de Villiers should bat in the first six overs of the innings.
De Villiers did not open the batting and came to the crease in the first six overs only twice in four innings.
“You had to compare Hashim (Amla) and Quinton (de Kock),” Du Plessis said. “Initially there was only place for one of them (in the team) but both showed amazing form. Wherever AB needs to bat he needs to put in performances.”
The other mystery was stalwart fast bowler Dale Steyn playing in just two of SA’s matches.
“With the young group of players we had, to have a player with that experience was always going to be invaluable,” Domingo said. “Hindsight is a great science but I’m glad that Dale Steyn went.”
The tournament marked only the second time in the 18 World Cups, Champions Trophies and World T20s SA have played in that they have been ruled out of the knockout rounds before the end of the group stage.
Du Plessis’ men crashed out of the running for a place in the semi-finals when England beat Sri Lanka in Delhi on Saturday.
By then they had lost to England and West Indies, which left their fate in other teams’ hands in an event in which any more than one defeat would have put a side on the skids.
Domingo said SA’s preparation could not be faulted, while Du Plessis blamed poor decision-making, the shoddy execution of basics, and conceding too many extras for his team’s fate.
“We just didn’t play the big moments well enough,” Domingo said.