Tom Moody is a cricket journalist who has written extensively on the South African domestic scene. In this article, he looks at how Temba Bavuma’s omission from the squads that toured England and Australia has left an ‘elephant in the room’ for South Africa. Moody does an admirable job of breaking down the decision-making surrounding Bavuma’s exclusion, and it is clear that he understands the game far better than most. In short, this article is essential for anyone looking to understand what has been happening behind the scenes with South African cricket.
Tom Moody on Temba Bavuma
Tom Moody is one of the most respected cricket commentators in the world. He has commentated on matches worldwide and is well known for his gameplay analysis. In this blog post, Moody looks closely at Temba Bavuma, who he believes is “the elephant in the room” for South Africa during the ICC World Cup 2019.
Moody begins by addressing how Bavuma’s omission from South Africa’s World Cup squad has received criticism from many, including himself. Bavuma was initially named in the initial 30-man squad announced in May, but he was dropped without explanation. Moody doesn’t believe that Bavuma’s drop has anything to do with his form or lack thereof; rather, it has more to do with politics than cricket.
Bavuma made headlines earlier this year when he threatened to leave South Africa if they did not offer him a longer contract. His agent subsequently stated that Bavuma would remain available for selection if selected for South Africa’s Test matches against Sri Lanka and Pakistan. Still, Moody believes this stance might have backfired, given the public response to Bavuma’s removal from the World Cup squad.
Moody discusses why Johannesburg-born Temba Bavuma is such a key player for South Africa and why they will need him during their group-stage matches at the ICC World Cup 2019. Not only is he one of their best batters (with an
Bavuma’s place in the South African team
South Africa’s squad for the match against England
Bavuma is one of four uncapped South African players who will face England at Old Trafford on Saturday. The 25-year-old has recently been in good form for his club side Orlando Pirates and has been tipped as a potential replacement for captain Hashim Amla who is expected to miss out with a thigh injury. However, Bavuma’s place in the team comes with much scrutiny from fans and pundits alike.
The first thing to note about Bavuma is that he is not a natural cricketing left-hander like Amla. He made his debut for South Africa as a right-handed batsman but quickly won over the selectors with his aggressive batting style. He scored his maiden Test century against Sri Lanka in December 2014 and followed it up with 98 and 101 not out against the West Indies in March this year.
However, some argue that Bavuma is not yet ready to be an international cricketer. They point to his poor performances in tests against top sides such as Australia (an innings of zero) and England (a score of six). Furthermore, they question whether or not he can hold down a spot in the team when other, more experienced players are available such as Faf du Plessis and Quinton de Kock.
Despite these reservations, Bavuma remains optimistic about his chances of making an impact at the international level.
South Africa’s chances in the World Cup
South Africa’s chances in the World Cup were dealt a huge blow when talisman and captain Temba Bavuma were ruled out for the tournament with an injury. Bavuma has been a mainstay of the South African side both on and off the field for over a decade and will be sorely missed by his teammates.
The loss of Bavuma will impact South Africa as they attempt to reach their fourth World Cup in five years. The 23-year-old midfielder has been one of the engine rooms of South Africa’s midfield, combining power, stamina, and creativity. He also can score goals from midfield, having already scored six times this season.
Replacing him in midfield is likely to be either Siya Kolisi or Luvuyo Mfoklo; both experienced campaigners may not have the same attacking threat as Bavuma. Depth will also be important for South Africa as they attempt to avoid being overwhelmed by more experienced teams in Group A, which features England, Panama, and Belgium.
Despite the loss of Bavuma, there is still plenty of talent in South Africa’s squad, and they are expected to compete strongly in Group A despite their lack of experience at this level. But without their talismanic midfielder, it will be difficult for them to achieve their ultimate goal: reaching the semi-finals, where they would have a good chance of facing world champion Germany.
Moody’s message for South Africans
“Moody’s message for South Africans: Temba Bavuma the ‘elephant in the room'”
South Africa is one of the most popular destinations for investment in the world, yet large swathes of its population live in poverty. This has led to social unrest and discontent, which Moody’s Investors Service has warned could trigger a rating review if action isn’t taken soon.
In an interview with Business Day, Tom Moody, Vice President and Senior Credit Officer at Moody’s, said that while there are many things South Africa could be doing better, such as creating more jobs and addressing inequality, one of the “elephants in the room” is Temba Bavuma.
Bavuma was recently named captain of the South African national cricket team but has been caught up in several controversies since making his international debut last year. These have included allegations of ball-tampering and racially-motivated comments made on social media.
Moody says these controversies could lead to questions over Bavuma’s character and ability to lead South Africa forward. If this occurs, it could lead to a rating review by Moody’s – something Moody says would not go well for either side involved.
As part of its efforts to address these issues head-on, Moody’s is hosting a series of town hall meetings across South Africa this month to get discussions on how best to move forward. The aim is not only.