Proteas not panic-stricken ahead of must win test against England, insists coach Arthur

Saturday, January 2, 2010

CAPE TOWN - Despite their heaviest test defeat to England in 45 years, South African coach Mickey Arthur insists that the Proteas are not panic-stricken ahead of their “must-win” third Test against England starting at Newlands on Sunday.

“The guys are calm, they’re relaxed, they’re focused and they believe in their ability to win this Test… We’ve got to win a Test match, and I’m pretty sure we’ll put out 11 players that can do that. Whether that’s one change or two, I’m not sure,” Sports 24 quoted Arthur, as saying.

On Wednesday, the Proteas lost to England at Kingsmead in Durban by an innings and 98 runs.

Arthur is likely to replace veteran bowler Makhaya Ntini with pacer Friedel de Wet in the third Test against England starting at Newlands on Sunday.

“We’ve got to look and see which team is going to give us a really good batting platform and which is our best option to take 20 wickets. There are going to be some tough decisions to be made and I’m sure we’ll make the correct ones,” Sports 24 quoted Arthur, as saying.

“Makhaya hasn’t performed as we would have liked over the last two Test matches. But we’ve got to look at what is our best attack to take 20 wickets in this Test match - we’re 1-0 down, and we need to win this Test,” he added.

Arthur also indicated that there were unlikely to be changes to the top six batting order.

“I think our top six is still the best top six that we can put out. I back them to do the job more often than not for us, and they have done it. It’s just a case of one innings where we were bowled out in Durban, so it’s certainly not panic stations in terms of our top six. (ANI)

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