Tony de Zorzi Interview: Facing Bumrah, TikTok stardom, IPL and more

Tony De Zorzi has been making waves for South Africa in Tests and ODIs Source: X)

In the South African cricket circuit, Tony de Zorzi has emerged as a dynamic force, making waves with some impactful performances in just three Tests and five ODIs. The left-handed batsman’s unbeaten century and a flamboyant 81 in the ODI series against India not only showcased his prowess, but also came as a breath of fresh air to world cricket.

As the fraternity marvelled at his attacking style, complete with shoulder-length deadlocks, De Zorzi showed he can stand up against a quality attack in the longest format. The Boxing Day Test was an example, where he contributed to a crucial 93-run partnership with Dean Elgar, which paved the way for South Africa’s victory by an innings and 32 runs. 

As South Africa look to sweep the two-Test series in Cape Town, De Zorzi shared his thoughts on his ton against India, the challenges of facing Jasprit Bumrah, his social media stardom on platforms like TikTok and Instagram, dreams of donning an IPL jersey and more in an exclusive interview with RevSportz.

Subhayan: Thanks for speaking to RevSportz, Tony. How was the feeling after cracking a maiden international century, that too against India, in the ODI series?

Tony de Zorzi: Thanks for having me. It was really cool. I enjoyed myself. I hadn’t played in front of a full crowd in Port Elizabeth before. So that was pretty special. And then, you know, like having those drives and shots and entertaining the crowd. It was pretty cool.

Also Read: Virat Kohli clocks up intensity as India seek redemption against South Africa in Newlands

Subhayan: You moved to Cape Town in 2020. How has been the journey and what influence did Ashwell Prince have in your career?

De Zorzi: Cape Town, honestly, is a great place to live in. When I moved here, Ashwell Prince was the coach. He had that influence in giving me freedom and security. Qaasim Adams, our batting coach, has been unbelievable in the last two years. He worked hard with me and the entire team. It has been a great ride so far.

Tony de Zorzi, is all smiles after a big knock Source: SA Cricket Mag

Subhayan: You are deemed as a destroyer of bowlers. What brings the best out of Tony de Zorzi?

De Zorzi: At least in white-ball, coaches have given me a certain role. I try to fulfil it to the best of my ability and implement it for my team. I won’t say I am an aggressive batter, but on the field you want to compete. That competitiveness brings the best out of me. 

Subhayan: You are a TikTok star. You even make fun of your own batting, routine and what not. What made you pursue this side of content creation?

De Zorzi: It is just a way of me expressing myself and having fun. Sometimes, there’s a disconnect between the fans and cricket guys. It’s easy for me to show that we are also normal people. I know some people will like it, and some will say I’m not focused, but I am not fazed about it. I enjoy making them and making some people laugh. It’s fun and a good way to connect to people.

Subhayan: You made your Test debut against the West Indies, but facing India is a different ball game. How did you prepare for such a big series?

De Zorzi: Playing the white-ball series obviously helped. When you are playing regularly, you stay in touch with the game. Of course, facing Kagiso Rabada, Marco Jansen, Nandre Burger at the nets will help you prepare the best. I did not have a great nets, trust me! So that was one way of preparing. With the senior guys around, you always get information. Guys like Dean (Elgar) and Aiden (Markram) are always imparting knowledge.

I think every day is a new day. In batting, sometimes you feel different. You can begin to take a view on a 100 and continue the next morning where you feel great. So it’s about having your same process, same routine. And then trusting all the work that you do. When you suddenly have a bad net, just maybe there’s something you need to look at. It’s not always technique. Sometimes, it’s mental too. So it’s important to work on that.

Also Read: Jasprit Bumrah’s Role ‘Huge’ in Cape Town Test: Bharat Arun

Subhayan: You had an important partnership with Elgar in Centurion before you were dismissed by Bumrah…how was it facing a world-class bowler like Bumrah?

De Zorzi: Bumrah and Mohammed Siraj bowled really well. Siraj is a serious competitor and Jasprit was very cool out there. There was a moment where Jasprit was running in and I thought it was really, really cool. Never thought I would face him. And that partnership with Dean was really important. It was a good ball by Jasprit that got me. But I tried to score as many runs as possible for my team.

Subhayan: You have been roped in by Joburg Super Giants at the last minute. Excited about having the first taste of franchise cricket?

De Zorzi: It’s cool to be picked up in that the first time. Coming up as a replacement is cool. Obviously Keshav Maharaj is the captain and it’s nice to have a relationship with him and some of the other players. I’m excited about the opportunities and looking forward to playing some T20 cricket.

Subhayan: Any IPL teams that you follow or dream to play for?

De Zorzi: To play in the IPL would be awesome. I won’t say I am a big supporter but I do follow Gujarat Titans and Royal Challengers Bangalore. 

Subhayan: So someday, we might see you having a partnership with Virat Kohli?

De Zorzi: You never know. That would be pretty cool (laughs).

Subhayan: Looking forward to giving a perfect farewell to Dean Elgar in his final Test?

De Zorzi: Dean has always been an example for the teammates. The way he has carried himself throughout the years has been exemplary. Playing in this beautiful ground, we will try our best to give him a perfect farewell.

For More Sports News Click Here 

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *