After losing the first two Tests, India came back strong in the 3rd and the dead rubber at the Bidvest Wanderers Stadium in Johannesburg to notch up a sensational victory.
South African batsman, JP Duminy expects the ODI series to be a close contest with the opening match of the six-match series scheduled to be played at the Kingsmead in Durban on Thursday.
“India are a phenomenal ODI side, and they’ve managed to compete in all conditions around the world. You don’t expect anything less from them. They have a few new faces and few young players but also a lot of talent,” Duminy told reporters on Tuesday.
“They have been exposed to the IPL scene, and they will be competitive in the series. Even though we won the first two Test matches, India competed, and that’s what you want to see from high profile teams. India being the World’s No one ranked team, you expect nothing less from them,” he further added.
The Test series turned out to be a bowler’s paradise where batsmen from both sides struggled. However, Duminy feels the pitches for the ODI series will be more batting friendly but added that the visitors have to improve since their performance in 2013.
“The pitches are going to be more batsmen friendly, I think. Its probably going to be high-scoring games across the country. And that will obviously bring the teams closer together. The key fundamentals for me in One-day cricket are partnerships with ball and bat. The team that gets that right has the best chance of winning,” said Duminy.
South Africa will also be keeping a close watch on how they want to form their team for the 2019 World Cup. With the introduction of new rules, most of the teams approach their middle overs differently.
“It depends on the makeup of your team. If you look back to a team like England, who bats quite deep they probably bat until 10 or 11 at times I guess they can afford to lose a couple of wickets in the middle in trying to be a little aggressive. And that’s worked for them over a period of time.
“For our team, its about understanding whats the makeup and how do we best get to a 300-past score. These days, even 300 is not good enough. Even with 350, you’re still not guaranteed a win. So, its about understanding whats the make-up, what each players role is and understanding how to go about that role, he said.
“There’s going to be a lot of shifting I would think leading up to the World Cup so guys will want to understand their role, understand their game and understand what brand of cricket we want to play going into 2019. It’s going to be an intriguing phase not only for our team but for all teams.”
The southpaw further stated he was looking forward to his reunion with the Mumbai Indians, the franchise for whom Duminy started playing in the IPL.
“Obviously I have been part of the IPL for a number of years so playing against the Indian team, you do end up playing against a lot of your potential teammates in the IPL.
“But right now, you know you’re going to be competitive, you want to win and you want to put big performances against the opposition. I don’t think we will see anything different, said Duminy.
“But yes, in a few months time, well be teammates (with Rohit Sharma at Mumbai Indians) and at that time, obviously it will be about putting the past in the past and concentrate on winning the IPL. I’m really happy to be back with the Mumbai Indians. It all started for me at Mumbai, he concluded.
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