Ever since being chosen for the South Africa A side at the end of last season, Dala has been struggling with a lot of injuries, but he was able to put together a full RamSlam T20 Challenge campaign for the Titans, playing a key role in their march to the title.
“It feels great considering all those injuries. I thought my season was done, certainly in terms of national representation. So to get that phone call from Linda Zondi [convenor of selectors] meant a lot and I didn’t really know what to do with myself for a while afterwards.
“It’s going to be a big day for my family, my Mom started crying when I told her the news, but after 10 years of hard work and her supporting me all the way, that’s how much it meant to her and me,” Dala said on Tuesday when the squad was announced.
Dala is a wicket-taker when it comes to T20 cricket and he says much of his success is down to Titans coach Mark Boucher and captain Albie Morkel telling him just to go after wickets.
“The coach has never put pressure on me, he just says to go and do what I do and make sure I have the same attitude and aggressive mindset. I have to credit Albie as well because even in one-day cricket, he just says I mustn't worry about run-rate, my job is to strike.
“So I do go for boundaries, but that’s within our game-plan. I’m willing to sacrifice economy because it’s about the team coming first. I have developed variations, I bowl a lot of slower balls, but the most important thing for me is to commit to every ball. I’m there to ruin the batsmen’s party and if I get hit for four or six, then the next ball just becomes the most important,” said Dala.
The Titans continue to churn out international players with Dala becoming the 14thplayer from the franchise to be chosen for South Africa in the last eight years.
He joins Warriors power-hitter Christiaan Jonker and Heinrich Klaasen, fresh from his stunning batting exploits at the Wanderers in the fourth ODI against India, as new T20 caps for the series that starts back in Johannesburg on Sunday
South Africa take on India in the 2nd KFC T20 International double-header at SuperSport Park on Wednesday 21 February. The Protea Women take on India from 13:00 before the Proteas Men's match gets underway at 18:00. Tickets available at ticketpro.co.za.