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Opportunity to expand leadership skills

Greetings all towards the end of what has been another whirlwind week.

Let’s start with the national T20 captaincy, which is now in my hands on a more permanent basis following the announcement that AB would prefer not to have that on his plate along with all his other responsibilities.

The decision was a little unexpected, but also a little expected. I’ve always known that it’s been up to AB whether he wanted to do it or not. Obviously, now he feels that it’s a bit too much and it’s an opportunity for me to expand my leadership skills.

Gary Kirsten has spoken about us growing our leadership base in the national squad, and it’s just a real honour to be part of that process. I’m currently also part of the one-day international and test squads, so what this means is that we have another leader in those teams as well. I’ve enjoyed leading the T20 side, but also realise that it’s a tough challenge.

You know, AB plays such an important role in all three teams and with key players being rested, he can now focus on being his absolute best in all three formats, with a little less responsibility in the T20 side. It’s the same with Graeme in the one-day side, and it’s great that the three of us can share the load. Gary wants as many leaders in the team as possible and I just think this will make us a stronger national unit all round.

As I write this, we’re wrapping up our preparations for the third test against Pakistan. Obviously it’s great that we’ve wrapped up the series, but Graeme has made it clear to us that if we are going to remain the number one test side in the world, then we need to keep playing like it.

The Cape Town result was just a fantastic one for us. For me, it was an example of where we are as a team and where we’ve come from. We’ve been under some serious pressure over the past 12 months and every time we’ve seemed to work our way out of it.

Robbie P’s knock in Cape Town was a great example of that, with us under the pump and struggling. Someone has produced the goods when we’ve really needed it, and we’ve also stepped on the gas when we’ve had to – that fourth morning at Newlands we really went hard at the Pakistanis and got the result we wanted. Often it’s been about weathering the storm, getting through it, and then pushing on to put our opponents under pressure when we’ve got the chance.

So, we’ll be looking for another good result in the third test. Pakistan remain a dangerous team and with Ajmal bowling the way he has, including picking up 10 wickets in Cape Town, they certainly won’t be a walkover. We will have to play to our potential once again.

As we finished the second test early, I had another day in Cape Town to check out property and where we are going to stay later this year. Last week I mentioned that Imari and I are looking to move to Cape Town and, at this stage, it looks like it will be June once I’m done with the IPL and Champions League. We haven’t found anything yet, but the machine is rolling on, and we hope to find something soon. I’ve also started looking for someone to rent my place in Pretoria, so hopefully it all works out soon.

Lastly, just a word on the story that everyone is talking about – the Oscar Pistorius saga. All I can say is that it’s just a horrible story and I just feel sorry for the families involved, particularly with all the lives it has affected.

Until next week.

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