Proteas in for tough India tour

WHEN the Proteas wrapped up the Test series with an innings and 74-run victory over England at the Wanderers on Sunday there was much relief among the Proteas' management, players and supporters.

WHEN the Proteas wrapped up the Test series with an innings and 74-run victory over England at the Wanderers on Sunday there was much relief among the Proteas' management, players and supporters.

The team needs to be congratulated on a job well done in that final game but it does not hide the fact that to escape with a drawn series against England is nonetheless disappointing.

The Proteas had the opportunity on more than one occasion to win crucial Test matches but lacked the killer blow.

With the tour of India just two weeks away, it's a worry.

Though a couple of the Proteas batsmen are still dreadfully out of touch, the selectors are unlikely to tinker with the current line-up.

Ashwell Prince and JP Duminy had a horror series. Apart from respective scores of 45 and 56 in the first innings of the first Test at Centurion, they battled for runs.

There is no doubt that they will return to form sooner rather than later, but whether they will find that form on the turning tracks of India, with passionate Indian supporters breathing down their necks, is uncertain.

India is a side of enormous talent. It's no wonder they are the current No 1 Test-playing nation.

Coached by former South African international Gary Kirsten, they have a settled look and appear to have all bases covered.

Star batsmen Sachin Tendulkar and Rahul Dravid are two players any coach would want.

A concern for South Africa going into this tour is their lack of depth in the spinners' department.

With Paul Harris dropped for the recently completed fourth Test at the Wanderers, the only variation to an all-out pace attack in the match was provided by part-time spinner JP Duminy.

In the side primarily as a batsman, Duminy is proving to be a more-than-useful bowler with his right-arm off-breaks, but to carry that responsibility into the cauldron of Eden Gardens in Kolkata is asking too much.

X