South Africa’s Test captain, Dean Elgar, has defended the hosts against allegations of “unbearable sledging” during the first Test against Bangladesh in Durban. He stated that his players didn’t swear or use foul language towards the Bangladesh batters in Durban.
The skipper further said that Bangladesh need to harden up and play the game at a high level, while reiterating that Proteas players didn’t abuse the tourists, instead they played hard cricket in Durban.
His comments came after Bangladesh cricket operations chief Jalal Yunus stated that the Bangladesh Cricket Board would make an official complaint to the ICC about what he described as biased umpiring and the “sledging” of the touring side. The second and final test will be played from April 8.
Elgar said ahead of the final Test at St George’s Park: “I don’t think they are justified whatsoever. We play the game hard (but) if anything we were just giving back what we were getting when we were batting. This is Test cricket. It’s a man’s environment when it comes to playing at this level.”
The skipper continued, “I intend still to play the game hard. We don’t swear or use foul language towards the Bangladesh batsmen because we still respect them. I think they need to harden up and maybe play the game at a level they’re not used to.”
Speaking about his message to South African players, Elgar noted: “We do everything with dignity and we don’t throw our badge or our name away. I honestly didn’t see any bad sledging out there, even from their side. I just think this is Test cricket and we need to dry our eyes sometimes.”
On the poor umpiring in the first Test, the South African captain said: “The umpiring was tough. I don’t think the wicket helped. There was variable bounce which can challenge the umpires. I feel for them because they are good umpires. The human factor needs to be spoken of, they do make errors, as do the players, but I’m pretty sure they’re going to learn a lot out of that.”
Elgar signed off by saying, “The umpires make decisions and we need to respect that. The technology is there for a reason. If you don’t use the technology you’re kind of holding yourself accountable for their decisions as well.”
(With AFP Inputs)