JP Duminy © Getty Images
JP Duminy © Getty Images

With scores of 15 and 2 in South Africa’s series opener against England in July, JP Duminy’s spot in the Test side was more or less under threat. The cricketer himself felt he had reached the end. His doubts were cleared when he was sent home after the Lord’s Test. At the time when he was sent back home, Duminy had gone eight innings with a top score of 39. Although he did strike two centuries over the past year, the lean patches overshadowed his big scores. It added constant pressure on the all-rounder to prove himself and stay in the XI.

South Africa had pushed players Temba Bavuma and Quinton de Kock to No. 6 and 7. Meanwhile, all-rounders received little chance to showcase their skills. Duminy recollected what persuaded him to end his Test career to ESPNcricinfo, “Walking off after Lord’s, I felt a change needed to happen. I rightly deserved to be dropped. There were guys putting up their hands for places and I felt I needed a different path.”

And what is Duminy up to now after Test retirement? Well, the all-rounder will be captaining the Invitation XI who will play a 50-over game against Bangladesh at Bloemfontein’s Mangaung Oval on October 12. AB de Villiers will also be part of the squad. Duminy was to lead Cape Town Knight Riders. However, with the T20 Global League postponed to 2018, Duminy will have to wait to prove his credentials as a limited-overs skipper.

Duminy is unhappy with the tournament pushed for the next year, “It is disappointing, not just from a South African point of view but also from a global point of view. I think the manner in which it has been postponed is the most disappointing. I’m hoping it’s not the end. I’m hoping it can recover and we can come to a consensus about the way forward.”

On the other hand, South Africa have to also concentrate on 2019 World Cup and how can they grab this opportunity. As for Duminy, it is also a chance to prove his worth with the bat and what better opportunity than the upcoming India tour. “Every player wants to win the World Cup but we still have a long way to go. To be there, I have to keep putting in good performances. It’s good to have a long-term goal but it’s also important that we stay focused on the present and what’s in front of us.”