Pakistan in SA

Kirsten: Win was encouraging

2013-03-25 13:33
Gary Kirsten (File)

Benoni - South Africa's five-match one-day international (ODI) series win against Pakistan was useful preparation for the year ahead, which includes the ICC Champions Trophy, according to head coach Gary Kirsten.

GALLERY: Proteas clinch Pakistan ODI series

“This was a good stepping stone for us in terms of where we want to go,” Kirsten said after the Proteas wrapped up a 3-2 series victory in Benoni on Sunday.

“I’ve been very encouraged by our players that haven’t played much one-day cricket for us before, and they’ve shown us they’re capable of playing at international level.

"It’s good to have competition for places and it has created depth in our cricket.”

Kirsten singled out Farhaan Behardien, who had only two ODI’s under his belt before the series, and David Miller, who had been in and out of the side, and said they had made an impact.

He was also encouraged by all-rounder Ryan McLaren, who enjoyed a fantastic series.

“To have a sixth bowler in your team is crucial and Farhaan Behardien had a bowl and made an immediate difference," Kirsten said.

“You need a guy to take pace off the ball, who bowls wicket-to-wicket and is slightly different from the other seamers, and it is a big factor for us.”

While Jacques Kallis would be available for the Champions Trophy, which will be hosted by England and Wales in June, and other major ODI tournaments, Kirsten believed the veteran all-rounder was of more value to the Test side and the five-day format would remain his priority.

“It’s been important for us to look for someone to step into Jacques’ place and Ryan McLaren has done a fantastic job.

"We’ve given him a bit of a run and he’s proved he’s got the skills on the bowling side.

“He hasn’t had to do much work on the batting side, but I’m confident he can do a job with the bat as well.”

Kirsten said AB de Villiers had made great strides as captain and performed well in all departments, despite public scepticism about how the captaincy would affect his batting and keeping.

The skipper was named Man of the Series for his 367-run contribution in the five matches.

“We ask a lot of AB and this has been a significant series for him in all his components.

“His batting has been outstanding and his keeping continues to develop.

"Most importantly, he has had a great couple of games from a captaincy perspective and he’s done a fantastic job this series.”

Winning the series 4-1 would have been preferable, Kirsten admitted, but he felt the team had played three impressive games of cricket and were moving in the right direction.

“Now is a good time for us to reflect and to work out how we’re going to go to the Champions Trophy and win that tournament,” he said.

“I’m very excited about the team we’re going to put together and we’ll be very motivated to win.

“Ideally, I would love to have had the squad together a month before the Champions Trophy, but it’s not the way cricket is these days, with the Indian Premier League, so you just have to prepare in any way you can.”

Read more on:    proteas  |  pakistan in sa  |  gary kirsten  |  cricket

What To Read Next


Read News24’s Comments Policy publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.
Live Video Streaming
Video Highlights
Sport Talk

03 November 2016
Australia v South Africa, Perth 04:30
12 November 2016
Australia v South Africa, Hobart 01:30
24 November 2016
Australia v South Africa, Adelaide Oval 05:30
Previous Results

Date Match Result

Pakistan have levelled their five-match ODI series against the Proteas. How do you see the series panning out?

Love 2 Meet
Sport24 on Twitter

Follow Sport24 news on Twitter


With the Absa Premiership in full swing, who will be crowned champions when all is said and done? Will Mamelodi Sundowns defend their title? Or can Kaizer Chiefs, Orlando Pirates or Bidvest Wits mount a serious challenge? Stay glued to Sport24 to find out!

Latest blogs

Twitter Follow Sport24 on Twitter

Facebook "Like" Sport24's Facebook page

WIN Enter and win with Sport24!

BlackBerry Stay in the loop on your BlackBerry

RSS Feeds Sport news delivered really simply.

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.