Faf Du Plessis' injury prompted selectors to fast-track the 23 year old to the hot seat.
IMAGE: Aiden Markram led South Africa to an Under-19 World Cup triumph in 2014 and has been widely regarded as a future captain. Photograph: CSA/Twitter
Having suffered a huge setback due to skipper Faf du Plessis' injury, Cricket South Africa on Saturday, February 3, named 23-year-old batsman Aiden Markram as skipper for the rest of the five-match ODI series against India.
Du Plessis fractured his right index finger during the first ODI in Durban that India won by six wickets despite his century.
Markram has only featured in two ODIs so far, making his debut against Bangladesh in October 2017. He has played 6 Tests.
He led South Africa to its Under-19 World Cup triumph in 2014 and has been widely regarded as a future captain. Du Plessis' injury prompted selectors to fast-track Markram to the hot-seat.
"It wasn't a hard decision. Rather, it was an easy decision. If A B de Villiers was around, and other senior players as well, we would have probably looked at different options," said Linda Zondi, convenor and head of the Cricket South Africa selection panel.
"But at the moment, with both our former captains not around, it was an ideal opportunity for us that here is Markram. Let us see what he can offer."
"We are confident. He wants to do it as well. It just gives us an opportunity to open it up and see what he can offer," Zondi added.
"We are aware that Markram is new to our set-up. Part of our Vision 2019 plan is to build a pool of leaders within the set-up. I think Markram has always been in our plans since he was Under-19 captain, leading up to South Africa 'A', and now joining the Proteas," Zondi said.
"It has been a journey. Yes there will be pressure in terms of understanding his role and also being able to perform as a player," Zondi said.
"For us, we want to see if he can handle pressure because part of leadership is to be able to adjust and perform under pressure. We hope he has the right skill and the right capability to do so," he added.
There has been no announcement on the captain for the three T20Is series though. Du Plessis is ruled out for that contest as well.
"At the moment," Zondi said, "we don't want to make any commitment. I think our primary focus for now is this ODI series. We do have a captain in Faf. Markram is going to be stand-in captain for the remaining ODIs."