LONDON, (Reuters) – South African strike bowler Kagiso Rabada is eager to return to action for this week’s third test against England at The Oval after serving a one-match suspension for disciplinary reasons, bowling coach Charl Langeveldt said on Monday.
The 22-year-old missed the second test in Nottingham after being banned for what the International Cricket Council (ICC) called “inappropriate language” towards England batsman Ben Stokes in the first test at Lord’s.
“He is the type of guy who steps up when the heat is on. Having KG back is a big bonus for us,” Langeveldt told reporters ahead of the third test which starts on Thursday.
“He is a youngster with a lot of energy, he will come with a lot of energy. I have no doubt he will step up… he will be raring to go,” Langeveldt added.
Rabada was handed one demerit point for giving Stokes a send-off after the all-rounder was caught behind in the first test, which England won by 211 runs, but under ICC regulations was banned for accumulating four points in a 24-month period.
The fast bowler had already been penalised three points for “deliberate physical contact” with Sri Lanka’s Niroshan Dickwella in February, but Langeveldt said the incident has not affected Rabada’s morale.
“He has been positive. He was obviously disappointed about what happened but he has learned from that. The important thing about an incident like this is to learn from it so that it doesn’t happen again,” Langeveldt said.
“KG is a strong character and he was positive the whole week, he said come Thursday he wants to be ready for the test.”
South Africa won the second test by 340 runs to level the four-match series at 1-1.