Tweaks to Proteas to scout more players
PROTEAS captain Faf du Plessis (pictured) yesterday asked for a more clinical performance from his players in the second one-day international (ODI) against Australia at the Adelaide Oval today.
The bowlers were almost faultless in the opening match in Perth to dismiss the home team for 152 in 38.1 overs, and it is with the bat that Du Plessis has asked for more ruthlessness and improvement.
It is often said to never change a winning combination, but the captain admitted the limited opportunities in a three-match series could warrant a few tweaks to scout as many players as possible.
All-rounders, Chris Morris and Dwaine Pretorius and left-arm wristspinner, Tabraiz Shamsi, could get a chance in potentially slow drop-in pitch conditions, he said.
“It was a great start for us,” Du Plessis said to the media at the Adelaide Oval yesterday.
“I would have liked us to be more clinical in making sure we won that game with eight or nine wickets in the shed after the great start we had with the bat. They bowled well and there was assistance in the pitch.
“For this game we are still looking at combinations. The obvious thing would be to play the same team, but we are constantly thinking of how we can get guys more experienced for the World Cup and to fine-tune that perfect balance we are after.”
The Adelaide Oval holds many fond memories for Du Plessis, memories that have shaped him into the leader and cricketer he is today.
They scale from the high of a determined Test century on debut in 2012, to overcoming the toughest week of his career with a resilient century in challenging surroundings during the 2016 ball-tampering case. Fish are biting everywhere in KZN, from the Midlands to the Salt.
Find out which baits to use in the fishing column on page 17.
“I love coming to Adelaide,” he said fondly. “This ground is probably my favourite in the world when it comes to playing cricket. I have some extremely good memories, Adelaide and Newlands are my two favourite grounds.
“It was a great debut for me,” he said of his 2012 entry.
“The next time I came back, there was a big build-up to that Test match with ‘mintgate’.”
He said his character was tested throughout that week. “Getting through that, personally was great for me, it showed the resilience of my character, that was good to learn about my own personality.
Today’s match starts at 1.50 pm local time (5.20 am SA time), with coverage on SuperSport 2.
Meanwhile, Australia have left pace spearhead Mitchell Starc, spinner Nathan Lyon and all-rounder Mitchell Marsh and veteran paceman Peter Siddle out of the 13-man squad for Twenty20 matches against South Africa and India.
Selectors are keen for the four to prepare for the upcoming Test series against India by playing red-ball cricket in the domestic Sheffield Shield. — Reuters, CSA.