Australia in SA
More of the same for Proteas
Durban - After putting in a clinical performance against Australia in Port Elizabeth on Sunday, the Proteas’ middle-order batsman JP Duminy said they were hoping to do the same again in Durban this weekend.
“It’s all about pitching up on the day and trying to put in the best performance you can,” said Duminy on Wednesday.
“We certainly did that in Port Elizabeth and that’s obviously our goal going into this game.
“So, hopefully we can put in another clinical performance like we did on Sunday.”
Duminy admitted both teams had been “hot and cold” in the one-day series so far and the Proteas had gone back to the drawing board to see where they could improve and were working hard on their consistency.
“We’ve got two days of hard training coming up and we’ve got to put in the hard yards to earn the rewards on the day.
“Our main goal is just to focus on our own team, and what we’re trying to achieve in training, and not worry about the opposition.”
Under new coach Gary Kirsten, Duminy said the onus was on the players, not the coach to win matches.
“Coaches have a generic way of going about things, maybe with the odd tweak here and there,” he said.
“But, as Gary pointed out to us, he doesn’t have a silver bullet to help us win games.
“He can only guide us so far but then it’s all up to us.”
With the series poised at 1-1, Duminy said the South Africans would not treat the match any differently even though it was a must-win for both sides.
“I guess it’s an important game for both teams to win the series but we don’t see it any differently from any other game,” said Duminy, refusing to be drawn any further on the importance of the game.
The weather in Durban has been wet and overcast and more rain is predicted for Friday and the match could be determined by the Duckworth-Lewis calculation as was the first ODI in Centurion last weekend.
“Durban is renowned for bounce and carry in the wicket but it might be more damp than usual,” said Duminy.
“So I think the team that figures out the conditions early on will be a dominant force.”
Meanwhile, the Australians too worked hard in the nets after fielding practice on Wednesday and, from there, went to the gym.
“We’ve trained hard throughout the whole series and the intensity of training has been as high as I can remember in any Australian team,” said Michael Hussey at the nets.
“The boys have worked really hard in the field, that’s why it’s important not to dwell too much on what happened in the last game.
“We need to make sure we play our best cricket. It’s like a grand final and we’re really looking forward to it.”
Although Australia are ranked top of the ICC ODI rankings, Hussey believed the two teams were fairly evenly matched.
“It depends on how both sides play on the day because if they’re both at their peak, there is not too much difference between them,” he said.
“In the last game, we were below par and South Africa played a good all-round game.
“Having said that, they were probably below their game and we were pretty close to our best at Centurion.
“One-all is probably a true reflection of where the series is at the moment.”