South Africa batter Janneman Malan on Wednesday backed under-fire skipper Temba Bavuma to return to form in the three-match ODI series against India, starting on Thursday.
Bavuma has been under-fire for his poor show with the bat in the three-match T20 International series, which the visitors lost 1-2. But, Malan believes the ODI series is the perfect platform for Bavuma to strike form ahead of the T20 World Cup starting later this month in Australia.
"As an opener, I can relate to that, I had a couple of experiences where when you're not in form or (don't have) a lot of matches under your belt...it's a quick-moving match...you have to find a way, and there's a lot of pressure with the run rate," Malan said in a virtual press conference ahead of the series opener.
"Sometimes it's tricky to get going and in a one-day game, it's easy to just bat, whereas in T20 cricket, you have to move so it's difficult."
Returning from injury to lead South Africa in the T20I series, Bavuma struggled with the bat, scoring 0, 0 and 3 in the three matches. With Reeza Hendricks breathing down his neck for a spot in the top-order, Bavuma desperately needs to find some runs to keep his spot in the playing eleven.
"Every player has their own role in how they approach things and the support. It's just about showing the guys some love," Malan said. "Temba is in a bit of a patch, but it can quickly change and he can find form easily before the World Cup.
"We back all the players in our camp, he is a good leader and is valuable in our space. It's just about showing him love and to perform at his best."