Hero­ics be­hind them, SA turn to 2nd T20

• Proteas, and es­pe­cially Ngidi, will take a lot of con­fi­dence into Dur­ban match, says Bavuma

Business Day - - FRONT PAGE - Khany­iso Tsh­waku

Af­ter sal­vaging an un­ex­pected but wel­come one-run win over Eng­land in their open­ing T20 in East Lon­don on Wednesday‚ Proteas bats­man Temba Bavuma says they need more of this sort of last-gasp win to help them pre­pare for pres­sure sit­u­a­tions in tour­na­ments.

Af­ter sal­vaging an un­ex­pected but wel­come one-run win over Eng­land in their open­ing T20 in East Lon­don on Wednesday‚ Proteas bats­man Temba Bavuma says they need more of those sort of wins to help them pre­pare for pres­sure sit­u­a­tions in tour­na­ments.

The Proteas are known to find ways of los­ing pres­sure matches in In­ter­na­tional Cricket Council (ICC) tour­na­ments‚ but they have learnt the hard way that what hap­pens in bi­lat­eral matches has no bear­ing on ICC tour­na­ments.

They have a sec­ond T20 in Dur­ban to drive home their ad­van­tage‚ even though Eng­land have more than once shown on this tour that they are not dis­ad­van­taged by los­ing the open­ing game.

“We know at the back of our minds that we want to be able to scrape the­ses type of wins when they re­ally mat­ter in the big events,” Bavuma said.

“We know that we’re going to be called upon to do that again and the best time is to start that against top teams like Eng­land. There’s a lot of con­fi­dence we’re going to take from the East Lon­don vic­tory.”

SA’s bat­ting started well then fal­tered‚ but in Lungi Ngidi they had a death bowler who can be counted on de­spite fit­ness is­sues. Ngidi de­fended seven off the fi­nal over with­out rais­ing much of a sweat.

Bavuma though knows how crit­i­cal the match-win­ning per­for­mance was for Ngidi‚ es­pe­cially af­ter the un­der­whelm­ing Pink Day ODI per­for­mance.

“It was mas­sive for Lungi from a be­lief and a con­fi­dence point of view. He didn’t have the best of games in the Pink ODI by his own ad­mis­sion.

“He would’ve had the hunger and the will to do right for the team and what bet­ter mo­ment to do it in the last over when you have to de­fend only seven runs‚” Bavuma said.

The weather should not have a say in Fri­day’s game in Dur­ban‚ but Bavuma knows the sec­ond T20 will be a dif­fer­ent game with a new set of chal­lenges.

“We can take all the learn­ing we can from this game into the next one. It’ll be important that we rock up in Dur­ban with all the con­fi­dence and mo­men­tum.

“It’s an­other game that’ll prob­a­bly present dif­fer­ent chal­lenges‚” Bavuma said. “We don’t want a sit­u­a­tion where we go to Cen­tu­rion at 1-1 and we prob­a­bly think we have the up­per hand on the Eng­land side at this point. It’ll be important for us to use the ad­van­tage we have.”

Temba Bavuma

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