Proteas shift focus to pink ball


The Proteas will shift their focus to the pink ball when they face a Victoria XI in a 50-over warm-up match at the Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG) on Saturday. 

The match was moved from a two-day to a one-day match in order to give the fast bowlers more time to refresh ahead of the third Test starting in Adelaide next week, and will mostly be an opportunity for the batsmen to find their feet against the innovative conditions.

The Proteas experienced their first taste of the pink ball in a two-day warm-up match upon their arrival in Australia, and will be looking to use the match as another trial to gain some confidence and an understanding of the day-night conditions.

The squad is full of confidence following their series-clinching innings and 80-run win against Australia in Hobart, and will be aiming for a first-ever series whitewash.

Senior Proteas batsman Hashim Amla told the media at the MCG on Friday: “Fortunately we have played some very good cricket.

“Cricket is a game where you have ups and downs, you can’t take your foot off the gas and you can’t take things for granted.

“The match has been shortened because it was initially a two-day game but we wanted to give the bowlers the best chance to recover ahead of the next Test match.

“We want to get some time in our legs again, some of us haven’t had a lot of batting time so we are going to try and get some time out in the middle.

Amla said of winning 3-0: “For us it’s important.

“We have come here on a mission, part of the mission has been accomplished which is wonderful, but 3-0 sounds better than 2-0 or 2-1 so it’s a big moment for us.

“Every Test match you play for your country is an amazing opportunity to showcase your skills and a great privilege and we will try and treat the game with respect.”