BY MARCUS HOOK
Dean Elgar has not ruled out another stint as Surrey’s overseas player, should the opportunity arise in the future.
The 30-year-old South African said: “It’s been my second stint for Surrey and it’s definitely been my most enjoyable one so far – an awesome six weeks. It’s gone really quickly.
“Who knows what the future holds, but the environment at Surrey is something really special.”
Elgar added: “It was so nice to come into a changing room where I already knew the guys. In my three county stints (the other being for Somerset), I’ve played with and against a lot of these guys – so it was good they knew what I was like and that I knew what they’re like.
“It’s a great club to play for. Alec (Stewart) and Michael (Di Venuto) run a seriously good ship, so it was great to come back to something that actually works and reward them with some good cricket.
“Stewie is a very player-driven kind of manager. Top of his list is looking after the players, which is something that’s often neglected, and Divva’s best trait is easing players’ minds. He’s brilliant at making their insecurities more secure.
“Surrey have an exciting young squad mixed with a lot of experience, which is important. It’s scary to think some of them have still got to learn so much. I was think just that when I was watching Will Jacks’s hundred the other day.
“So, bright futures for quite a lot of the guys, especially Sam Curran, Ben Foakes and Ollie Pope. It’s scary to think they haven’t played international cricket yet. Who knows how strong they will be by then!”
Although his departure coincides with the news that the deal to bring Virat Kohli to the Oval has fallen through, Elgar believes his former South Africa team-mate Morne Morkel – who does not count as an overseas player due to his Kolpak status – will spur Surrey on even further.
“What Morne will bring is a lot of experience,” said Elgar. “He’s played at the highest level in every format. It’s noticeable that even the older guys in the Surrey changing room hang on every word he says.
“It’s really important for this group going forward to have guys like him around, and guys like Gareth Batty – guys who have played a lot of tough cricket who can also pass that message on to the younger players.”
Elgar agreed that the key to Surrey keeping alive their hopes in the Royal London One-Day Cup rests on the newly found confidence in chasing a target batting second.
Following last Sunday’s six-wicket victory over Essex, the veteran of 49 Test matches said: “I don’t want to put the mockers on us, but we seem to chase relatively big totals nicely. We did very well in all three disciplines of the game, set up by a very good bowling performance on a very good batting wicket.
“Credit to our seamers and credit to Gareth Batty, who bowled brilliantly on a wicket that was quite tough to bowl spin on. It was good to see him a Scott Borthwick put their hands up. Scott got two important wickets which enabled us to build some momentum.
“We were also fortunate to have Jason Roy in the squad. We know how devastating he is as a batter and the start he gave us was awesome. It was important that we capitalised in that middle period, because slow bowlers can sometimes dry the game up a bit, but we just kept accelerating and it was rewarding to chase down such a big total.”
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