Durban - The Proteas begin the last lap of
their Cricket World Cup preparations with the five-match One-Day International
(ODI) series against the West Indies starting at Kingsmead on Friday.
Captain AB de Villiers says the series will
be an opportunity for the Proteas to fine-tune their World Cup preparations,
with exactly a month to go until their first match of the tournament against
Zimbabwe in Hamilton on February 15.
a big series for us,” De Villiers said to the media on Thursday. “We know
pretty much where we are heading and we are happy with the squad that we have,
I’m quite sure of who is going to walk out there and play tomorrow. It will be
great to have a good series here and to go to the World Cup with full
confidence. It will be good to drill in
the combinations that we want, so I see it as an important series for us.”
West Indies bounced back after a disappointing Test series to win the T20 international
series 2-1, and will be brimming with confidence going into the series.
“It will be very competitive,” De Villiers
said of the series. “The West Indies will be in the game, they have a lot of
confidence after the T20 series. Whoever you play, whether it's the best or the
worst team in the world, you are representing your country and there will be
competition, that’s for sure.”
Villiers says he will be donning the gloves for the opening match on Friday in
the absence of Quinton de Kock, but would “ideally” like to be relieved of the
duties sometime during the series.
“The main thing for me is that he is
currently not part of the World Cup squad,” he said of Morne van Wyk. “There
are a few fringe batters that I ideally would like to play every game in this series.
It depends on how I go with the gloves, I also ideally wouldn’t like to ‘keep
for all five matches. So there might be an opportunity for him (Van Wyk) to
come in. Quinton is not so far from ready as well so there are quite a few
things to take into consideration when we give Morne a game.”
January, 1st ODI, Sahara Stadium Kingsmead, Durban 13:30
18 January, 2nd ODI, Wanderers,
21 January, 3rd ODI, Buffalo Park, East
25 January, 4th ODI, St George’s Park, Port
28 January, 5th ODI, SuperSport Park, Centurion