The Spin | Why Temba Bavuma’s second century matters, for himself and South Africa

Bavuma had become a walking metaphor for his country’s failures before change in coach and promotion to captain

He got there with a lofted cover drive. There is no stroke in cricket that better captures the artistry and grace of a batter in full flow than a flashing scythe through the offside. But add in a bent back knee, an arched torso, a flourish of the hands and the delicious parabola of a ball careening over the infield and what you’ve got now is a statement.

Temba Bavuma has been making statements ever since he first held a cricket bat in Langa, an underdeveloped area of Cape Town that was solely reserved for black Africans under apartheid. But he rarely uses words. Those rarely leave his mouth in anything other than a mumbled tone as they coalesce into a collection of media-trained athlete-speak.

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