Dean Elgar and Aiden Markram    Getty Images
Dean Elgar and Aiden Markram Getty Images

Since the retirement of Graeme Smith and Alviro Petersen, Dean Elgar has been South Africa s mainstay at the top. Elgar has opened with the likes of Smith and Petersen over the course of his career. However, his bonding with newcomer Aiden Markram flourished during the recent 4-day domestic match where the duo added 184-run stand, scoring centuries respectively. After Smith and Petersen s retirement, Elgar has opened the innings with Stiaan van Zyl, Stephen Cook, Theunis de Bruyn and Heino Kuhn. However, after his innings with Markram for Titans, Elgar considers Markram a special player and is that he will open batting for South Africa for a long time.

I m extremely excited for Aiden. He s proven over the last couple of seasons that he is a really special player, Elgar told Independent online. Hopefully we can have some longevity; we need that stability and some kind of consistency with regards to the opening combination. Hopefully we can have a few series and a few seasons together, Elgar added. Markram has also led South Africa in the recent A tour against India in Australia. He was also the captain of Titans. In a week s time, Markram went on to earn a Test call up after his captaincy.

Elgar feels Markram can step up as a captain for the nation too in coming years. Elgar mentioned one of the talking points between the duo while travelling to the venue will be to keep it simple, He s a highly special cricketer and a gifted player. He mustn t forget that. Test cricket can cloud your thoughts because of who you are and who you re playing for… the occasion with cameras around, you can get sidetracked. I guess it s my job to ease his mind and make him feel welcome, Elgar backed the youngster.

As for Elgar, the opener has contributed enough to South Africa in Test cricket last year. He s the second highest run-scorer in Test cricket in 2017 with an aggregate of 767 runs, putting him second to India s Cheteshwar Pujara (851).

Elgar hopes to continue the consistency, I ve got no option if I don t do well in Test cricket, I don t play international cricket. It s not a bad way to look at it It s a harder mentality, that s how I approach my game.

Elgar is aware about Bangladesh s sudden rise in Test cricket and their success in their backyard. However, Elgar feels Bangladesh are yet to prove their stance away and that could be an advantage for the Proteas, They ve had some success at home, but not that much away, possibly because they have to get accustomed to having their seam bowlers do more of the work than they have to do in Bangladesh, concluded Elgar.