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Proteas must find some confidence says batting coach

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Because of all the fresh faces, batting coach JP Duminy told the media that one of the main objectives of the camp was to explain what it means to play for the Proteas to the newbies and make them feel part of the team.

JP Duminy, the South African’s Men’s team batting coach. File Picture: Gavin Barker, BackpagePix

Ongama Gcwabe

The Proteas squad that will face the West Indies in a three-match T20 series next week is set to leave South Africa this weekend.

This is following the week-long camp that coach Rob Walter held in Pretoria this week to help prepare the squad for the series.

The side has a number of fresh faces who are in line to earn debut T20 caps for South Africa, including all-rounder Patrick Kruger, batter Ryan Rickelton and spinner Nqaba Peter.

Because of all the fresh faces, batting coach JP Duminy told the media that one of the main objectives of the camp was to explain what it means to play for the Proteas to the newbies and make them feel part of the team.

“We’ve got a lot of new faces in the team, a few debutants, so it’s really about getting an understanding of what it means to play for the Proteas and getting them into the environment,” he said.

This side is different to the World Cup squad, but also has a number of players who are part of that group, including Rickelton, Reeza Hendricks, Tabraiz Shamsi, Ottneil Baartman and Bjorn Fortuin.

Rickelton was one of the players who many would not have included in the World Cup squad, after he had been dropped from the ODI and Test sides last summer.

However, the 27-year-old topped the runs chart in the SA20 earlier this year, forcing his way into Walter’s World Cup plans.

“It’s an exciting time for Ryan,” said Duminy. “I’ve had the great privilege to work with Ryan at the Lions, as the batting coach there. You could already see that he was head and shoulders above the rest.

“I’m not surprised that he’s got the call-up. It’s selection that is warranted. He’s certainly excited. He’s got the skill set that we need going into the World Cup.”

All three matches against the West Indies will be played at Sabina Park in Jamaica next week Thursday, Saturday and Sunday.

Duminy emphasised that the main focus is on putting in big performances during the series to build momentum for the World Cup.

“It’s about game one in Jamaica against the West Indies. How do we rock up and make sure that we’re clear in what we want to do, how we want to play and put in a big performance. That’s the intention and the language within the group,” he said.

“Momentum creates confidence. We want to take good performances into the World Cup. There’s not a lot of preparation when you think about it leading into our first game as an actual World Cup group.”

The South Africans will open their World Cup campaign against Sri Lanka in New York on June 3.

Proteas T20 World Cup Squad

Aiden Markram (captain), Ottniel Baartman, Gerald Coetzee, Quinton de Kock, Bjorn Fortuin, Reeza Hendricks, Marco Jansen, Heinrich Klaasen, Keshav Maharaj, David Miller, Anrich Nortjé, Kagiso Rabada, Ryan Rickelton, Tabraiz Shamsi, Tristan Stubbs.

Travelling Reserves: Nandré Burger, Lungi Ngidi.

Proteas Provisional Squad For West Indies

Ottniel Baartman, Matthew Breetzke, Bjorn Fortuin, Reeza Hendricks, Patrick Kruger, Wiaan Mulder, Lungi Ngidi, Nqaba Peter, Ryan Rickelton, Andile Phehlukwayo, Tabraiz Shamsi, Rassie van der Dussen.

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