‘The experience of playing against India was incredible’, says South African pacer Nandre Burger | Cricket News

NEW DELHI: South African pacer Nandre Burger expressed his enthusiasm about the incredible experience of playing against India in the recently-concluded all-format home series. The 28-year-old pacer made his all-format debut during the series and made a notable impact with his bowling performance.
Burger stood out by taking 11 wickets in two Tests, which included a four-wicket haul, five wickets in three T20Is, and one wicket in a solitary T20I, showcasing his effectiveness across formats.He also mentioned that he learned a lot during the course of the series, emphasising the valuable experience gained from playing against a strong team like India.
“The experience against India was obviously incredible. The overall experience was cool. I think I learned quite a lot, and I can take away a lot from that experience. I find it so cool when a crowd gets involved in a game. It is the coolest thing when you are running in and the crowd is cheering,” said Burger in a press conference ahead of the opening match between Sunrisers Eastern Cape and Joburg Super Kings in SA20 season two, which will start from Wednesday.
Burger highlighted the importance of resting and recovery after a Test series, noting that T20Is typically involve fewer overs, making it a format where players can enjoy more. He emphasised that the shorter format allows for a different kind of approach, and the more one plays, the more enjoyable it becomes. This perspective underlines the significance of managing workload and adapting strategies based on the specific demands of different formats in international cricket.
“Nobody will ever say no to rest, but it is still part of the season if I can put it that way. It is not like I expected to rest. The transition back to T20 cricket, it is obviously a lot less overs. I think T20 has its own challenges and it is all about adapting. Personally, I feel the more you play, the more fun it is,” said Burger.
Burger acknowledged that transitioning from Test cricket to the T20 format, specifically in the context of SA20, presents its own set of challenges. Adapting to the different demands and strategies required in the shorter format can be a unique adjustment for players.
“It is important to adjust. Each format has its challenges. Adjusting to the conditions and opposition. Obviously, the guys will come out and play a lot more shots. It is about being switched on from ball one,” said Burger.
Burger also commented on the decision to send a second-string South African team to the New Zealand Test tour, which coincides with the SA20. He described the timing as unfortunate, likely referring to the clash between the two series.
Despite the challenges, Burger expressed hope that the new squad, consisting largely of uncapped players and led by uncapped player Neil Brand, will perform well and make South Africa proud.
“I do not know if it is a thing of struggling, but more a thing of unfortunate timing. I think Shuks (Proteas Test coach Shukri Conrad) did talk about it. It is more a thing of guys being put in a position where they have to choose. The team will do us proud in New Zealand and everyone playing here will keep growing this league. I think last year it was a really cool league,” said Burger.
On skipper Faf Du Plessis’ leadership in JSK, Burger said that he has experience in handling a crisis.
“He has a lot of experience in terms of handling a crisis. He is a good guy to keep you calm and focused on what is ahead. He is able to give you the best possible advice in a moment when you are under a bit of panic,” said Burger.
Burger said that he was disappointed to miss the first season of the SA20 due to a heel injury.
“Leading into this tournament, I feel like I am in a good space. Obviously, things are clicking nicely. I am excited to get going. It is so nice to catch up with everyone. The team is in a good space. I am excited and ready to go,” said Burger.
On whether JSK is underdogs against defending champions Sunrisers Eastern Cape, Burger said, “It is tough to say there is an underdog in the first game of the tournament. I think all teams are trying to settle into a new competition again. Each team has a process to take to do that.”
Talking about former English batter Kevin Pietersen advising him not to smile after delivering a ball, the pacer said that he ran into Pietersen at the airport yesterday.
“We chatted a bit. He asked ‘Why are you still smiling?’ I told him it will take a lot to wipe away this smile,” he added.
Joburg Super Kings Squad: Faf du Plessis(c), Reeza Hendricks, Leus du Plooy, Donovan Ferreira(w), Moeen Ali, Romario Shepherd, Kyle Simmonds, Gerald Coetzee, Lizaad Williams, Nandre Burger, Imran Tahir, Wayne Madsen, Aaron Phangiso, David Wiese, Dayyaan Galiem, Sibonelo Makhanya, Zahir Khan, Sam Cook, Ronan Hermann
Sunrisers Eastern Cape Squad: Adam Rossington(w), Temba Bavuma, Dawid Malan, Aiden Markram(c), Tristan Stubbs, Marco Jansen, Simon Harmer, Tom Abell, Ottniel Baartman, Liam Dawson, Ayabulela Gqamane, Sarel Erwee, Patrick Kruger, Beyers Swanepoel, Andile Simelane, Caleb Seleka, Jordan Hermann.
(With ANI inputs)

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