Opinion: Nowhere to hide for the Proteas this season

Nowhere to hide for the Proteas this season

The Proteas face a challenging 2019/20 season that will see them tackle the big three in series at home and away.

An away series in India will be cut short to accommodate the second Mzansi Super League with the Proteas returning to play three ODIs after hosting England and Australia.

The retirement of Hashim Amla means the Proteas will have to blood his replacement this season. Whoever is chosen to step up will need to adapt to top-level cricket quickly. In the limited-overs arena, South Africa already have several players who can replace Amla. In the Test arena Amla's retirement has left at least one spot in the XI open, as things stand Zubayr Hamza is accepted as next in line. There is , however, an A Tour to India before the Proteas visit.

Whether it is Hamza or someone else who steps into Amla's boots, the Test series in India will be a baptism of fire. After India, there will be a different kind of challenge.

England arrive after the Mzansi Super League in the height of summer. The Proteas have lost the last two series home and away against the English, who have a pace attack to rival South Africa.

The player who slots into the XI will be joining a batting unit that isn't quite firing on all cylinders as it is.

The matches ahead for the Proteas will provide a good indication of where cricket is at in South Africa and what work the new director of cricket will have to do.

After the white-ball portion of the England tour, Australia arrive for yet more limited-overs cricket.  There will be a particular focus on building towards the Twenty20 World Cup in Australia in 2020 throughout the season.

The first internationals of the season will be T20Is and will take place under the guidance of the interim director of cricket Enoch Nkwe.

The Proteas may be transitioning into a new style of team management and replacing retired players, but they will be expected to be competitive in India.

Cricket South Africa have given the Proteas a vision for how they want them to play white-ball cricket, but it is the players who will have to deliver on that vision.

The director of cricket will have the task of setting the Proteas on the path to being competitive on multiple fronts. The T20 World Cup looms while the Test Championship starts in a matter of weeks and in the near future an ODI League will come into being.

The ICC's drive for context means a cricketing world where the players and technical staff will be under immense pressure and the Proteas high-stakes 2019/20 season is great preparation for that.

There will be no place to hide for weak links in the Proteas organization this season where every game will be hard-fought. Rookies and veterans will all need to contribute, and the same is true of the technical staff.

Written by James Richardson for Hollywoodbets

Hollywoodbets - Play with your Mobile Today - Sports Betting - Mobile Betting - Thumbs Up