AB pleased with preparations in New Zealand

South Africa ODI captain AB de Villiers says his squad will take a lot of learning and confidence from their two-nil ODI series win against New Zealand.

The rain in Hamilton in the third ODI did not dampened the Proteas’ spirits, who concluded a successful tour both on and off the field. They did need to win the third game to regain the number one ODI ranking though.

De Villiers said of the positives from the tour: “We came here with intention of acclimatizing to the surroundings; flying here, the jetlag, the crowds, even the food.

“It was important for the players to experience the small things that take time getting used to, sometimes it’s quite a culture shock when you tour a place for the first time, this experience will be important for us come the World Cup.

“I think we have covered the bases when it comes to that.”

De Villiers has been impressed by the application of the basics with both bat and ball, but still believes there is room for improvement, particularly in the field.

“There are still areas that we can work on, we are nowhere near where we want to be,” he said. “We did the basics really well, certainly better than New Zealand on this specific tour and series.

“That gives us a lot of confidence, knowing that we can do the basics well and can lay the foundation with both bat and ball. It’s a matter of being more ruthless in certain areas of the game.

“The basics set us up nicely for winning both of the games. Especially with the bat, if you do the basics well and have wickets in hand from overs 35 to 50 onwards, you can really hurt a bowling attack.

“The same goes with the ball, if you strike early on it’s difficult for batting teams to come back.

The Proteas travel to Sydney on Tuesday, ahead of the three-match T20 International series against Australia starting on November 5 in Adelaide.

De Villiers, Morne Morkel, Dale Steyn and Vernon Philander will remain in Australia, while Faf du Plessis and Hashim Amla will return back to South Africa. These players will join up with the ODI squad ahead of the five-match series against Australia on November 10.

Farhaan Behardien, David Wiese, Reeza Hendricks, Kagiso Rabada and Marchant de Lange will join the T20 squad in Sydney this week. The T20s will be captained by JP Duminy.