South African batsmen Quinton de Kock and Aiden Markram
- Proteas opener Quinton de Kock says that the hunger is there to win an elusive World Cup title for South Africa.
- De Kock is optimistic about the team’s chances in the Middle East and believes that the Proteas are heading in the right direction.
- The Proteas head into next month’s T20 World Cup with three successive T20 series wins over the past few months.
Proteas star batsman Quinton de Kock believes the side has what it takes to win an elusive title at next month’s T20 World Cup.
De Kock is part of a relatively young Proteas squad for the showcase event in the United Arab Emirates and Oman, set from 23 October to 14 November.
He is joined by David Miller and Kagiso Rabada as the only players in the squad who played in the 2016 T20 World Cup in India.
The Proteas have never made a final of a World Cup and will look to rectify their poor form in ICC events.
However, the Proteas go in with added confidence after recently completing three straight T20I series wins over West Indies, Ireland and Sri Lanka – and their sixth successive triumph in the shortest format.
De Kock believes that the Proteas are on course to win their first World Cup trophy.
“When it all comes together at that point in time, I’m sure I’ll be more excited. I’m definitely waiting for it,” said De Kock on Monday.
“My hunger to win a World Cup is there, especially with this team. I’ve got a great feeling about this team, I think we’re heading in the right direction.”
The Proteas will open their campaign against Australia in the first game of the Super 12 stage at the Abu Dhabi International Cricket Stadium on 23 October.
De Kock will be competing in his third T20 World Cup and hopes that the Proteas can shed the disappointment of the past.
“It would be great to put one of those in the bag. I’ve been a part of a couple and sadly, we’ve come short in them,” said De Kock.
“There’s been some great games but with a lot of disappointment, but it’s a big tournament. We’re going to give it our best shot, that’s for sure. We’ll definitely try our hardest and hope the results come our way.
“Hopefully, we take the confidence from this series into the World Cup.”
De Kock’s form will be an integral part of South Africa’s path to the T20 World Cup final.
On Sunday, the father-to-be De Kock struck his 10th T20 half-century to see the team home as the Proteas cruised to a nine-wicket win against Sri Lanka in the second ODI.
The 28-year-old put on 62 runs with opening partner Reeza Hendricks (18) and then had Aiden Markram (21) as the pair saw South Africa home.
De Kock ended on an unbeaten 58 off 48 balls (7 fours) as the Proteas clinched the three-match T20 series 2-0 with the dead-rubber scheduled for Tuesday.
“The guys have been working hard, not just on this tour. It has been highlighted our play against spin on turning wickets so we’ve worked really hard,” said De Kock.
“And it’s showed, especially in Sri Lanka, it hasn’t been easy wickets. All the batsmen have improved and showed a lot of people how to play spin. It’s good to see them getting it done.”
The third and final T20 on Tuesday starts at 15:30 SA time.