Young Titans opener Aiden Markram is eager to take up the gauntlet that has been laid down by Cricket South Africa in appointing him as the four-day skipper of the South Africa A team that is set to tour England.
Markram has been earmarked for progression for some time now and the 22-year-old is a former South Africa under-19 skipper.
The Momentum One Day Cup at the tail end of the domestic season provided an excellent platform for Markram to showcase his talents but it is the longer format that may yet prove to be where he will progress the quickest with the Proteas seeking a right-handed opener to partner Dean Elgar.
Speaking to Supersport.com Markram said: “It [the captaincy] was very unexpected obviously and it is quite a humbling thing to have happen to you, but I think it’s going to be a great experience.
The Proteas are eager to use the A tour to ensure some of their Test specialists get game time ahead of the series against England meaning Markram will be rubbing shoulders with the likes of Dale Steyn, Temba Bavuma, Dane Piedt, Duanne Olivier and Theunis de Bruyn.
The newly appointed A skipper is eager to learn as much as he can from these seasoned pros.
He added: “As a young guy it is really nice to be able to learn from those types of players. I think it can fast track your career massively just from rubbing shoulders with them and asking them the right questions.”
Markram has broken into a Titans team packed with international stars and domestic stalwarts something he concedes was not easy but he lauded the team atmosphere under coach Mark Boucher.
He said: “Look it’s not easy to crack it in the Titans environment, but in the same breath it is also awesome to be a part of such an environment. The team culture and work ethic among all the players is as good as I have ever seen it.
“He (Boucher) has really helped my game a lot; more from a role definition and mental approach point of view. For example, being trusted to bat through the innings in One-Day cricket and to bat for time rather than set goals for how many runs you want to score in the Four-Day stuff. Since I’ve changed my mindset along those lines, it’s sort of worked out, but as a young guy there is still a lot to learn.”