THE Twenty20 International against England, which was affected by Monday night’s rain, has given the Proteas the ideal preparation leading into the ICC World Twenty20 in Sri Lanka, assistant coach Russell Domingo said on Tuesday.
The match was abandoned before the allotted overs to constitute a match were bowled, but some key fundamentals were taken from the abandoned result.
"I don’t think the national side has been involved in a lot of these shorter type of games, so going to the World Twenty20 where those situations could be a possibility is probably a great exercise for us," Domingo said.
"It gave us some idea of how to approach our innings, how to approach our defence when we’re bowling, and our strategies in those situations. There was massive value in having a shortened version, because that is a distinct possibility going into a World Cup."
Hashim Amla top-scored with 47 off 30 balls, and held the innings together during an erratic display of batting. The strategy to give all the big hitters a strike upfront meant an unusual No7 position for Jacques Kallis, who was unbeaten on 13 off seven balls.
"Hashim hasn’t played a lot of Twenty20 internationals," Domingo said. "He is still finding his feet and trying to find his strategy in Twenty20 cricket." There was a big difference between one-day internationals and Twenty20, he said.
Domingo praised Dale Steyn and Morne Morkel, who bowled superbly in the opening overs, showing impressive degrees of control and composure. "Yesterday’s bowling conditions suited our type of attack, there was a bit of pace in the wicket. The lengths Morne hits are always going to be difficult because of the levels of bounce. It was a good opening spell from our bowlers, which put England under pressure."
Proteas coach Gary Kirsten would miss the final Twenty20 in Edgbaston on Wednesday, Cricket South Africa (CSA) said on Tuesday. The coach would return to South Africa to spend time with his family and rejoin the squad on Sunday in Colombo, Sri Lanka, ahead of the World Twenty20 to be held between September 18 and October 7, CSA said.
"I have made a decision to go home and to see my family. That is something that has always been part of my thinking when I took up this job," Kirsten said.