‘Smooth transition’ for Nqaba Peter into Proteas squad

Spinner Nqaba Peter goes through his paces during Proteas practice in Pretoria this week. Photo: BackpagePix

Spinner Nqaba Peter goes through his paces during Proteas practice in Pretoria this week. Photo: BackpagePix

Published May 17, 2024


EVERY now and then the systems in place in South African cricket actually produce talent from environments many would not have gone to in search of talent.

As much as the systems running the game in the country are often questioned, they do present opportunities to players, and East London-born wrist spinner Nqaba Peter is a prime example.

Peter was spotted bowling to the Proteas in the nets at Buffalo Park during the ODI series against West Indies last year. Just like that, the youngster was on his way to sign his first major professional contract as he joined the Lions in Johannesburg.

A little over a year later, the 22-year-old is set to don the green and gold when South Africa take on West Indies in three T20s in Jamaica next week.

“It’s still sinking in and it’s a huge opportunity,” Peter told the media this week.

“I could have never envisioned it any better than this. It’s a really special moment for me. Everyone keeps telling me that it’s a great start.

“I’m happy with how things have gone. I’ve really put in the time when no one was watching.

“If I didn’t get the opportunities, maybe it wouldn’t have happened this way, so I’m grateful for the opportunities. I called my mom to tell her that I am in the team – she was the first person I told.”

The youngster said that his transition to the national team has not been hard, more so with Paarl Royals teammate Tabraiz Shamsi also in the side.

Peter said it is the likes of Shamsi and all the experienced players in his circle that have played a role in accelerating his growth in the past year.

“Rubbing shoulders with them in the camp has not been hard. It’s been quite a smooth transition because if I haven’t played against them, I’ve at least played with them in my team (Lions) – and for some guys, it’s the first time sharing the locker room together,” said Peter.

“Having Shamsi around is very beneficial. I’ve learnt so much from him (in the SA20). Our relationship has really grown and gotten stronger.

“With the guys I’ve had around me since I made the move from East London to Joburg, they’ve added big value in me focusing on the basics, but those small adjustments make a really big difference.

“I couldn’t be more chuffed with how the CSA T20 Challenge went. I’m content. I’m proud of myself.”

The 22-year-old will be put to the test when he goes up against the hard-hitting West Indian batters next week in Jamaica.