Thursday, December 1, 2022

CSA: Improving Proteas switch focus to ODIs

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Proteas batsman Janneman Malan believes South Africa are ready as they can be for their three-match One-Day International (ODI) series against India that begins in Lucknow on Thursday.

The opening match at the BRSABV Ekana Cricket Stadium is under threat due to rain in the city. However, the tourists have done all that they possibly could ahead of the game, which they will enter with confidence growing after impressing in their last two T20 Internationals (T20I) against the hosts, albeit with mixed results.

The South Africans lost the 20-over leg of the trip 2-1, but were extremely impressive in matches two and three, winning the latter by 49 runs on Tuesday.

“I think we do a lot of work in preparation for the games and we see how the conditions are where we are playing,” Malan told the media on Wednesday. “As I’ve heard it’s a big field we are playing on for the first ODI so we’ll keep that in mind.

“There’s obviously weather around, so we’re preparing possibly for an on and off match and we’re also going through the (opposition) team and preparing for that. It’s specific to every match and changes for every game as well.”

The match is also the first of some key games in their quest to qualify for the 2023 ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup. Head coach Mark Boucher’s side are presently 11th on the ICC World Cup Super League standings where only the top eight automatically qualify for next year’s finals in India.

It means they can ill-afford too many more slip-ups and Malan said: “I think everyone knows how important the next eight games are for the Proteas in the ODI format. We’re trying obviously to try and maximise the points from all the matches.

“The World Cup is in India and personally, I’ve thought about it, it’s nice to get good prep and put in good performances to hopefully join the team. So it’s good to play in these conditions.”

Does that mean there is more pressure on the squad? Not so according to Malan, who feels that every game for your country should be treated as must-win affairs.

“To be honest, we’re playing international cricket where every game is a must-win,” he added. “There’s a lot of fans out there backing the team, there’s a lot of pressure, there’s a lot of people talking about it so it’s not that much of a different mindset.

“Obviously we know exactly what we need to do to qualify but when it’s just normal matches the pressure is still on to perform, so it won’t be the biggest change in mindset, just trying to do well for the country.”

South Africa ODI squad against India

Temba Bavuma (captain, DP World Lions), Quinton de Kock (Momentum Multiply Titans), Reeza Hendricks (DP World Lions), Heinrich Klaasen (Momentum Multiply Titans), Keshav Maharaj (Hollywoodbets Dolphins), Janneman Malan (Gbets Rocks), Aiden Markram (Momentum Multiply Titans), David Miller (Hollywoodbets Dolphins), Lungi Ngidi (Momentum Multiply Titans), Anrich Nortje (Gbets Warriors), Wayne Parnell (Six Gun Grill Western Province), Andile Phehlukwayo (Hollywoodbets Dolphins), Dwaine Pretorius (North West Dragons), Kagiso Rabada (DP World Lions), Tabraiz Shamsi (Momentum Multiply Titans).

South Africa ODI Tour to India Itinerary (all times local)

Thursday, 6 October at 13:30 

India vs South Africa – Lucknow

Sunday, 9 October at 13:30

India vs South Africa – Ranchi

Tuesday, 11 October at 13:30

India vs South Africa – Delhi

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