The Citizen (KZN)

SA Women’s team gear up

- Own Correspond­ent

Ahead of the commenceme­nt of the T20 series between the Proteas Women and Sri Lanka starting tomorrow, the hosts are determined to make a strong start against their tricky opponents.

Speaking at the start of the squad’s first training session at the Redhill School in Sandton, top-order batter Sune Luus (above) shared her eagerness for the upcoming battle against the Sri Lankan outfit.

“It’s been quite a long season but a successful one,” Luus noted. “It will be good for us to finish off the season with a good couple of series wins. Sri Lanka is a very talented squad, we know what they bring. All the subcontine­nt teams are very spin-dominant and they’re very good at their skill.

“It’s also a bit concerning that (Chamari) Athapathth­u didn’t score in the WPL, so she’s due some runs. We’re playing at grounds where sometimes it’s very spin-conducive, so it’s going to be a bit of a challenge, but a good challenge. We’ve had Bangladesh over in December, which is kind of the same vibe.

“We have a very good squad, some new faces as well, which is very exciting. Just excited to get the series up and away,” the 28-year-old added.

Head coach Hilton Moreeng emphasised the importance of preparatio­n over the coming days to help the team put their best foot forward when the action gets underway in next week’s first T20I in Benoni.

The Proteas have previously experience­d slow starts to tours throughout the season, including an opening-series loss against Bangladesh in December.

“At the end of the day, what’s going to be key is how we focus. We work and we speak about these things and it’s just unfortunat­e for us it’s become a pattern that we don’t want to be accustomed to. We need to make sure that we don’t play catch-up cricket.

“From the first ball, we need to make sure we’re ready for what is coming. The two teams have played a lot of cricket against each other and they know each other very well. There shouldn’t be a lot of surprises,” the coach said.

Echoing her coach’s sentiments, Luus added: “It’s always important for us to start and end well. In the first game, we need to be up and running and get that momentum on our side. We start a little bit slow, but we’re in-season and there’s been a lot of domestic games happening as well.”

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