Proteas bats­man says team have been fo­cused on se­ries win

Afro Voice (Northern Cape) - - FRONT PAGE - NEVILLE KHOZA nevillek@the­

WITH Aus­tralia cricket in tur­moil fol­low­ing the re­cent ball-tam­per­ing scan­dal and cap­tain Steve Smith and vice-cap­tain David Warner sus­pended, Proteas bats­man Hashim Amla in­sists they won’t take any­thing for granted in the fourth and fi­nal Test to­mor­row.

The Proteas can make his­tory by beat­ing Aus­tralia for the first time in a home se­ries since read­mis­sion if they win the fi­nal Tests. And that’s what the fo­cus has been on as they are not aim­ing to get drawn into the con­tro­versy sur­round­ing Aus­tralia.

That was they case when they won the third Test in Cape Town as they did not al­low any off the field drama to af­fect them.

“With all the dis­trac­tions, there is not much we can do from our per­spec­tive,” Amla said.

“I am grate­ful that we are sit­ting in the South African change room with­out the shad­ows hang­ing over us. For us, it is about the cricket. You’ve got to keep your fo­cus as pro­fes­sional sports­men.”

Should the Proteas win, it will be the first time they will do so against Aus­tralia in a home se­ries since read­mis­sion. They did beat them away in a Test se­ries but have strug­gled to do so at home.

“We are very mo­ti­vated. I don’t think South Africa have won a se­ries against Aus­tralia since our ad­mis­sion.

“At the start of the se­ries that was mo­ti­va­tion there to be the team to achieve it. We played some good cricket.

“We played good enough cricket to be 2-1 up in the se­ries. So at this venue, I’m sure the cap­tain and the coach will see what the wicket is like and make a de­ci­sion about how we go as a team.

“With all the dis­trac­tions there is not much we can do about it and I’m glad we are sit­ting in the South African change room 2-1 up with­out any prob­lem.”

Amla, who has not en­joyed a good run of form, is eye­ing the last Test to score big but in­sists he is not feel­ing any pres­sure.

“No, I don’t feel it. The pres­sure we have is to per­form at our best. As I said, we have not played our best cricket.”


NO MERCY: Bats­man Hashim Amla says his team will not take any­thing for granted.

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