Former skipper Graeme Smith joins South Africa squad as adviser: South Africa’s former captain – under whom the Proteas have ruled the world, has been appointed as the ‘adviser’ for the below par performing team, South Africa. The man still holds the record for the ‘most test victories’ as captain, which is likely to remain intact for long in Test history. No wonder the most experienced captain in Test history was the go to man for the board.
Graeme Smith linked up with the team ahead of the second Test against England at Cape Town and will continue till the end of the series. The man who took out Nasser Hussain, Michael Vaughan and Andrew Strauss on successive tours of England is back, but this time with a different job, off the field and not with bat in hand. He will serve as the batting consultant for the dejected South Africa’s batting.
“Graeme was a wonderful cricketer for South Africa and a wonderful captain,” said current South Africa’s skipper Hashim Amla, who also said he was not upset by Smith”s criticism of the team”s batting in Durban Test, where South Africa faced 241-runs thumping defeat.
Hashim Amla added that Smith”s experience in the dugout would be vital, which will help the youngsters and demoralized veterans. “Graeme was a wonderful cricketer for South Africa and a wonderful captain. Graeme knows more than most how tough it is to play cricket and how it is to go through tough times,” he said.
Graeme Smith had hinted earlier that he may come out of retirement to help South Africa after looking at their abject surrender in the series against India. Smith retired in March 2014, unexpectedly at the age of 32. Five months before that, he smashed a double-century in UAE against Pakistan which reflected his determination and dominance in the sub-continent, marked by no series loss under his reign in the challenging conditions of the four countries.
Graeme Smith who captained South Africa in 109 Tests has led his side to 53 wins, accumulating 9265 runs with 27 centuries at an average of 48.25.
He has done commendable job for his team over a span of 12 years. But the question is, without a bat in his hand, working with the team off the field, can it make a difference?