De Kock: Still a Must have Player in South Africa Squad

Proteas opener Quinton de Kock has moved up to the fourth position in the ICC ODI batting rankings after playing a huge part in his team’s 5-0 victory over Sri Lanka.

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De Kock

He is a South African professional cricketer who plays for the Titans at the domestic level and the South African national team. He has already played for Mumbai Indians in the Indian Premier League matches. He has been won the title of a cricketer of the year in 2017 Annual awards.

He is commonly knowns for the best wicket-keeper batsmen among the world’s best cricket teams. As an inning batsman and wicket-keeper, de Kock made his domestic entrance for the Highveld Lions during the 2012 and 2013 season. He quickly caught the selector’s eye for the national level, when he starred in a match-winning partnership with Neil McKenzie in the Champions League T20 against Mumbai Indians.

He made his international entrance in the first match of South Africa’s home T20 International series against the touring New Zealanders during the 2012 and 13 seasons. He was asked to keep wickets in place of AB de Villiers, who asked to be rested. He has since played regularly for the team at both One Day International and T20 International level. In February 2014, he also made his Test entrance for South Africa, playing smoothly as a batsman.

Recording to his 20th ODI match, he scored five centuries already. He became the fourth player to score three successive one-day centuries and the second player to score four ODI centuries before his 21st birthday. In his 74th ODI, against Sri Lanka on 10 February 2017, he became the fastest player to complete 12 ODI hundreds.

Although he opens the batting in One Day International and T20 cricket, he primarily bats in the middle order in Test cricket. On 22 July 2018 during the second test match against Sri Lanka, he went onto become the fastest wicketkeeper in terms of 35 matches to effect in 150 test dismissals.

Domestic Career

From Johannesburg, he entranced for Gauteng’s senior team during the 2009-2010 season, aged 16, and afterward represented the national under-19 team at the 2012 Under-19 World Cup.

Records and Achievement

Fastest South African to reach 1,000 ODI runs.

De Kock

ODI Cricket Career

De Kock represented South Africa for the first time, at T20 level, on 21 December 2012 against New Zealand. While South Africa crushed New Zealand and got them all out for only 86, the hosts chased it down easily with 8 wickets still remaining. De Kock made an impression on his first appearance by scoring an unbeaten 28 off 23 while chasing. He also kept wicket and gloved two catches. De Kock made his entrance for the South African ODI side on 19 January 2013, against New Zealand. It was reported that he was training and grooming under expert retired South African wicket-keeper batsman Mark Boucher ahead of the ODI series against New Zealand. He was promoted to the opening batting spot from his second match onwards with Graeme Smith in his entrance series.

In November 2013, he was selected in the first XI of South Africa against Pakistan in the United Arab Emirates, in place of Colin Ingram. the De Kock scored a match-winning 112 off 135 balls on a tough batting track in Abu Dhabi in the fourth ODI to reach his maiden ODI century. South Africa won the ODI series 4–1. They also played two T20 games against Pakistan. De Kock scored 48 not out in the first match while chasing and took them home. They won that T20 series too by 2–0.

On 5 December 2013, De Kock scored 135 against India at his home ground in Johannesburg. His innings guided the team to a 141-run victory over India and he was awarded his first-ever ‘Man of the Match’ award in One Day International cricket. He followed his performance with another successive ODI ton in the next match against the same team in Durban. He scored 106 runs making a record-breaking opening stand of 194 in Durban with teammate Hashim Amla who also scored a century in the same match. This performance awarded him another ‘Man of the Match’ award while they already won the series beating India by 134 runs. He again broke a century knock of 101 in the 3rd ODI which was later abandoned due to rain, but he became only the fifth person to achieve this feat of three consecutive centuries in One Day Internationals, after Zaheer Abbas, Saeed Anwar, Herschelle Gibbs, and AB de Villiers. He also became the highest run-getter ever in a three-match bilateral ODI series, breaking the previous record of Martin Guptill. Meanwhile, he was awarded the ‘Man of the Series’.

De Kock scored his 5th ODI century knock of128 against Sri Lanka to record their first-ever ODI series win in Sri Lanka. He also scored his maiden test fifty in the series.

In the 3-match tour to Zimbabwe in August 2014, De Kock eventually became the joint quickest batsman to reach 1000 runs in ODI cricket sharing the record with Viv Richards, Jonathan Trott, and Kevin Pietersen. He reached the milestone in 21 innings. He was also awarded the ‘Player of the Series’ in that tournament where South Africa beat Zimbabwe 3–0.

In the ODI series against Bangladesh in 2017, he along with Hashim Amla set the highest record ODI run stand for South Africa with an unbeaten partnership of 282 runs. This is also the highest ever partnership in One-Day Internationals without losing any wickets.

In April 2019, he was named in South Africa’s squad for the 2019 Cricket World Cup. The International Cricket Council (ICC) named de Kock as the key player of South Africa’s squad for the tournament. In the opening match of the World Cup against England, he scored 68.

Test Cricket Performance

In February 2014, de Kock made his Test entrance for South Africa, scoring seven runs in the first innings and 34 runs in the second innings against Australia.

In January 2016, when South Africa was losing the home Test series against England, De Kock was recalled to the Test side for the second Test, taking the keeper’s gloves from AB de Villiers, but failed to deliver. He was replaced by Dane Vilas at the 11th hour before the third Test, after a freak injury he picked up at home the afternoon before. He was again selected for the fourth and the final Test and scored his entrance Test century with a score of 129 not out in the first innings coming to bat at number seven. In the tour, De Kock reached a milestone as the fastest to reach 10 ODI centuries. He completed his 10th century in his 55th match. In their 3rd test against Pakistan, he made his same score of 129 in their 2nd innings in 2019.

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