Is Temba Bavuma a burden in T20Is for South Africa?

South Africa’s white-ball skipper Temba Bavuma has been under light for a while. In particular the twenty20 internationals. Bavuma scored just three runs in three innings (including two successive ducks) in the recently concluded T20I series against India. This raised further questions about the ability to have someone like him lead to South Africa in the shortest format.

The middle-order batter, who opens in T20I cricket, averages 23 and strikes at 116 since his debut in 2019. His overall Twenty20 career records an average of 29 and a strike rate of 123. It is below average in terms of T20 cricket, especially when one is the skipper of the national side.

Is Temba Bavuma a burden in T20Is for South Africa? It’s a question that even the South Africans will be asking the country’s governing body of cricket. 

The recent performance of Temba Bavuma

The recent performance of the skipper of the African nation is very poor. His last five innings are all in single-digit scores. His high score was eight retired out, averaging 4.75 per innings.

In fact, the whole of 2022 saw Bavuma play against India. In these seven games, his high score is 35 (from 30 balls) where he averages 10.67 and a strike rate of 82. In Temba’s whole T20I career, he scored only one fifty. It came against Ireland in July 2021.

Bavuma was even ignored by the selectors for their new league the SA20, in which he showed his disappointment for almost being let down.

Also Read: No Pakistan Players allowed in SA20 League

We break down his career annually. The chart shows that the year 2020 was where he met the standards for playing the shorter format.

YearInningsRunsAverageStrike Rate50sBest
201927676.00115.15049
2020617328.83142.97049
20211225222.90114.54172
202276410.6682.05035

Maybe there is a reason of the downfall of South African middle order batter.

Is Bavuma suffering from captaincy pressure?

This is a big statement. We have seen players in the past where good players often struggle with their batting when they are given leadership. Such could be the case with Bavuma. We again break down his career into captain vs non-captain stats and it is very appealing.

RoleInningsRunsAverageStrike Rate50sBest
As Captain1931618.58106.04172
As Non-Captain824935.57133.15049

It is crystal clear that leadership is affecting his batting. Even though the player showed some fine leadership skills. 

Perhaps a change of leader would benefit the team in the future. Someone like Aiden Markram, who is still the only South African captain to win an ICC World Cup title

It is understandable that Temba is not going anywhere soon. Not unless the T20 World Cup 2022 concludes and where South Africa ends in the tournament. 

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