Proteas season review

In modern cricket seasons have become less clearly defined with many players playing virtually non-stop as they opt to play in T20 or foreign leagues during their downtime.

Having said that the South African summer season both domestically and internationally ended in March and while the Proteas will have a busy winter traveling to England for the Champions Trophy and a full bilateral clash with the hosts now is a good time to look back on the 2016/17 season.

The climb

The Proteas began their Test season against New Zealand in Durban sitting in 7th place on the ICC rankings and reeling from the news that AB de Villiers would be out for an extended period of time.

There was widespread pessimism surrounding the team and with a trip to Australia looming South Africa needed something special to happen and it did.

Faf du Plessis took the reins as skipper and brought his own brand of aggressive leadership with him.

He would earn the role of permanent skipper in a Test campaign that saw the Proteas win every series they contested beating New Zealand twice by the same 1-0 margin, claiming an incredible third consecutive series win in Australia and whitewashing Sri Lanka at home.

South Africa would end the season in second place on the rankings scoring a $500,000 purse in the process.

In ODI cricket South Africa re-established their dominance returning to the number one ranking after dual whitewashes of Sri Lanka and Australia and a hard fought 3-2 win away against the Black Caps.

Increasingly there is a distinction between the ODI group and the Test unit, whether some of the new ODI stars like Andile Phehlukwayo and Dwaine Pretorius bleed through to the Test team remains to be seen.