Aiden Markram says it will be a "dream come true" to open the batting for the Proteas with franchise teammate Dean Elgar against Bangladesh during the two-match test series starting in Potchefstroom on Thursday.
Speaking in Centurion on Friday afternoon after their Sunfoil Series match against the Dolphins ended in a draw where he captained the Titans‚ the unassuming 22-year old Markram confessed that he always had a dream of becoming a Proteas player.
"I am incredibly happy and privileged to be part of the South African test squad. I haven’t given it much thought at all because my focus was on the match against the Dolphins. I supposed it will sink in the next couple of days‚" he said.
"This is what you dream of as a little boy‚ for a dream like this to come true is unbelievable and I am excited for the series that is ahead and I will work hard in the next two weeks‚" he said.
On the first day of the four-day match against the Dolphins‚ Markram scored 119 with new Proteas coach Ottis Gibson watching from the stands and he followed that up with a knock of 87 to make a strong case for the selectors.
"On the first day‚ I did not know that the coach and convener of selectors were here but I eventually saw them at half time but as a player you can’t put yourself under unnecessary pressure‚" he said.
"I think it was a blessing in disguise that I didn’t see them from the start. It is just one of those things you can call good timing or fortune and it worked out very well for me."
Asked if he will seek advice from some of the South African openers of the past like Graeme Smith‚ Markram said he would feel "a little bit out of place" to do that at the moment.
"I know they will be welcoming and take me with open arms but I want to establish a relationship with them first before I start bombarding them with lots of questions‚" he said.
"For the time being‚ I have nice people who are willing to help me in the Proteas set-up and even a guy like (Titans coach) Mark Boucher.
"I have fantastic people in my corner‚ and my relationship with them is very important."