Amla looking forward to change of opponents

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South Africa batsman Hashim Amla is looking forward to the end of the ODI series against Pakistan, saying the players were a little bit sick of facing the same side for the past month.

South Africa batsman Hashim Amla is looking forward to the end of the ODI series against Pakistan, saying the players were a little bit sick of facing the same side for the past month.

The sides contested a T20 and ODI series in the UAE earlier this month, as well as two Tests, and then Pakistan came to South Africa for return T20 and ODI series. The final game at Centurion will be their 14th in a row.

Amla said on the eve of the third and final ODI, where SA will look to avoid a whitewash: "It's been a competitive series, but it's been a bit like Groundhog Day where you wake up and play the same team all the time.

"Both teams are quite evenly matched. We managed to take the lead and cross over the line in the UAE, but in South Africa we've missed out."

He added that he was looking forward to the change in opposition next month, saying: "It will be welcome for everybody to play India when they arrive."

The mild-mannered batsman said that the players were upset with the themselves for losing the series, but were working hard at ending strongly and continuing from there.

He said: "When you lose a series everybody says harsh words in their minds to themselves. There was a lot disappointment in the team, but you have to move on.

"The games have been so tight, but we just have to take the lessons from the games. One-day cricket is about adapting really quickly."

The Proteas will be without star fast bowler Dale Steyn, who is being rested due to a slight niggle, but Amla feels the back up bowlers are equally capable of doing the job one more time against Pakistan.

He continued: "If you look at our bowling unit, even in the UAE, everyone has done well. Without Dale it's a loss as he's been outstanding and he'll be missed, but it will give the guys on the fringes a great opportunity.

"Wayne Parnell, Ryan McLaren and Vernon Philander, these guys are also great batting options."

Speaking of batsmen, Henry Davids returns to the side in place of Graeme Smith, who will miss out due to the passing of his grandmother this week. Amla felt Davids, normally an opener, would be comfortable at first drop.

He said: "I think he'll be comfortable. I was chatting to him earlier and he said batting three is just like one ball away from opening.

"I think he'll be very happy at his home ground. He's very excited and we hope that he just kind of kicks on."

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