Cricket World Cup 2011
Mbalula comforts Proteas
Fikile Mbalula (Gallo Images)
Johannesburg - The Proteas will have to return to the drawing board and engage in some "self-introspection" following their quarterfinal cricket World Cup loss to New Zealand, Sports Minister Fikile Mbalula said on Sunday.
Addressing reporters at OR Tambo Airport in Johannesburg, he called the defeat a "sad misfortune that has descended upon us". "Gaps" needed to be identified and strategies set up to address "matters warranting" attention.
He thanked the team for its "gallant fight".
Coach Corrie van Zyl said it was difficult to express the disappointment felt by the team.
"We have to accept the burden of previous generations. We did not have the composure to go all the way."
Van Zyl, whose tenure as coach ended with South Africa's exit from the World Cup, said he believed the team had adopted a new culture and team spirit.
"There is no question that this team will win the World Cup one day. It is important to keep the core of this team together."