Heinz Schenk
2 minute read
1 Aug 2017
6:30 pm

Tough guy Dean Elgar: ‘X-rays are a waste of money’

Heinz Schenk

The Proteas opener is probably carrying a broken finger with him. It won't stop him from playing in the final Test against England.

Dean Elgar: a tough nut to crack. Photo: Mike Hewitt/Getty Images.

“That’s a waste of money. Let’s not go that way.”

Dean Elgar isn’t talking about buying a new shirt.

He’s referring to a X-ray … on a possibly cracked or broken finger.

The Proteas opener isn’t going to miss Friday’s fourth and final Test against England in Manchester, especially if he can make that call himself.

Also read: Faf du Plessis on the flaws plaguing the Proteas in England

No, he wants to be in the thick of things.

Elgar came out battered and bruised after the 239-run loss to the English at The Oval.

While fielding, he was hit on a finger –  there was bleeding and bruising.

A nippy Toby Roland-Jones delivery whacked him on the hip before he got hit on the same finger again.

In between it all, Elgar ended with a magnificent 136 in a losing cause.

It clearly brought out the best in him.

“I prefer not getting hit, to be honest, but you have to take the blows,” said Elgar.

“It puts me in a different mindset. It’s like the challenge is a little bit more. I guess only an opening batsman could see it that way.”

To compound matters, the England bowlers probably had it coming because they were quite chatty in the field.

Admittedly, they backed up their talk with wickets but they found it immensely hard to dislodge Elgar.

“It’s something that gets me going, chirping and stuff like that that is something that really gets me going. I enjoy that,” he said.

“England are a big huff-and-puff bowling attack and when they are on top they are definitely going to bring their mouths as well.”

Elgar was about the only batsman to emerge with any credit from the game and has certainly put some of his teammates to shame with his determination.

But there was one other guy who tried to show the same application: Temba Bavuma.

And even though his contribution amount to a gritty 52 and patient 32, Elgar believes his 27-year-old teammate is on the cusp of something special.

“Temba shown a hell of a lot of growth,” he said.

“He looks extremely focused and his game plan is arguably the best of all our batsman. His ability to adapt has been a massive positive. He’s going to crack on and score a big one.”

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