Pieter Malan and Rudi Second might be vying for a single spot in the Proteas side for the 1st Test against England on Boxing Day.
Very tough call for the selectors as their stats are neck and neck. They’re the same age and their first-class batting records are almost identical.
Malan has had a longer career which gives his stats more value, and he’s an opener, which gives the side more options, especially if Markram is injured.
I like the idea of Second as a rugged middle-order batter rather than debuting Malan as an opener against a fiery England attack and the perils of the new ball in such an important series, but I’m sure Malan would cope. He could also settle into the middle-order as an anchor for the Proteas.
They have both been making runs, Malan getting bigger scores but as an opener he would have more chances for tons. Second can keep wicket as well, but the Proteas need the best option with the bat, rather than looking for a wicketkeeping insurance policy.
The important thing is there are a lot of quality batters waiting for their chance and it will be exciting watching one (or maybe both) of them getting their chance on the international stage.
Good luck guys.