Proteas have score to settle

2012-02-01 18:00
SA ODI skipper AB de Villiers (File)
Rob Houwing, Sport24 chief writer

Cape Town - If South Africa have any regard for history, they will know that the one-day international portion of their fast-approaching tour of New Zealand presents an opportunity to bury a painful memory.

AB de Villiers’s side will have a Twenty20 game against Canterbury on February 15 and then three T20 internationals to sharpen their general limited-overs game, after a “feet-up” period for the players following the Sri Lankan visit to our shores, but then have a special reason to hit the ground running in the ODI series.

That is because the equivalent series on their last visit to New Zealand, in 2003/04, amounted to one of their most traumatic periods ever in the format.

There was little indication of the angst to follow when they roared into a 1-0 lead in the six-match series, courtesy of a five-wicket victory with two balls to spare at Auckland’s famous rugby temple of Eden Park, Boeta Dippenaar and Shaun Pollock scrambling them over the line.

But it was all downhill from there in the sometimes ill-tempered series, as the Stephen Fleming-led Black Caps won all of the next five ODIs on the trot for a surprisingly emphatic 5-1 outcome in their favour.

Fatigue was cited as a major cause for South Africa’s slide, considering that they had come off a lengthy period of virtually non-stop globetrotting activity, but the result still came as a shock to Proteas fans, used to rather more competitive showings in limited-overs cricket.

The Proteas’ captain at the time, Graeme Smith - who remains in the current ODI mix despite relinquishing the leadership to De Villiers - did his best to lead from the front, with successive personal knocks of 72, 80 and 43 in the first three encounters, but even his own form faded with the team’s implosion.

The touring party this time will include just four survivors from that series - Smith, Jacques Kallis, Robin Peterson and Albie Morkel - with most of the squad having savoured the recent 3-2 home series victory over the Lankans, although the last two dead-rubber matches were lost.

South Africa do boast supremacy from the last time these nations met in a bilateral ODI series, winning 2-1 on home soil in 2007/08.

The Proteas are currently ranked third in ODIs and the New Zealanders seventh.

Read more on:    proteas

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

Should Proteas coach Russell Domingo stay - or go - as national coach?

Love 2 Meet
English Premiership flutter

Take Sport24's "expert" tips at your peril...


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.