St George's Park will host this week's third Test. It is the home ground of Nortje, who plays franchise cricket for the Warriors. Dafabet have the Proteas priced at 1.91 and the English 1.87 to win the third Test.
“I'm really excited to be playing in Port Elizabeth. I've always been sitting on the grass embankments, watching the games. It's really nice to be out here,” Nortje was quoted as saying by ESPNcricinfo.
“The square is quite green, so it's difficult to bang the ball in. It's a nice vibe and atmosphere here, especially in the stands with the band. It's one of the grounds where you feel like you are on the field. You don't feel like you are too far back, so it feels like you're in it.”
Nortje in the MSL in PE
Nortje's last match at St George's Park was the Cape Town Blitz in the 2019 Mzansi Super League. He took the wicket of England batsman Jason Roy, but the Nelson Mandela Bay Giants won regardless.
“It's a lot of hard work over the years, a lot of sacrifices, a lot of Decembers in South Africa that I've had to play cricket rather than go on holiday, so it's nice to finally get that opportunity and I am really excited just to go out there and give it my best,” he added.
Proteas captain Faf du Plessis, meanwhile, won't be lured into debate about the form of batsman Temba Bavuma and others. Bavuma was dropped from the XI for the second Test at Newlands, where the hosts lost, while du Plessis has only managed 69 runs in four innings this series. He also hasn't scored a Test century since January 2019.
“I am not getting in a battle with myself and Temba over who plays and who doesn't. My performances also need to go up in terms of scoring. Temba has been put in a position where he needs to score runs to get back into the team and if he does that, he will,” said du Plessis.
“You are used to it. When you have played international cricket for as long I have, it comes with media for you and media against you. And to read to much into it, for and against – it's really important for any player not to get sucked into it too much.”