Let Quinton De Kock be the free spirit he is: Aiden Markram

Mumbai: South Africa’s stand-in captain Aiden Markram believes that soon-to-retire wicket-keeper batsman Quinton de Kock is a free-spirited man and should be allowed to do so. Left-handed batsman De Kock scored 174 runs in 140 balls against Bangladesh here on Tuesday, helping South Africa score 382 runs for five wickets. This is De Kock’s third century in five innings. Thanks to his innings, South Africa won against Bangladesh by 149 runs.

Apart from De Kock’s century, Heinrich Klaasen (90 runs in 49 balls) and Markram (60 runs in 69 balls) also scored half-centuries, due to which South Africa was successful in scoring 144 runs in the last 10 overs. Markram said after the match, “We all know Quinton is an independent minded person but actually he has a brilliant cricket mind.”

De Kock, who announced his retirement from the ODI format after the World Cup, was on 407 runs. He has become the top scorer in the tournament, leaving behind Virat Kohli (354).

“And then you never want to bite him,” Markram said. You just want to let it fly. He structures it the way he feels it needs to be done and we fully support him as a unit.”

Praising De Kock, Markram said, “He adapts to the circumstances. He assesses very well and gives us information even before we come out to bat. It helps a lot.” Barring the defeat against the Netherlands, South Africa’s campaign so far has probably been as impressive as India’s and even New Zealand’s. However, the team is yet to face these two strongest teams of the tournament.

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