Proteas up for pressure test

JP Duminy (AFP)
JP Duminy (AFP)

Cape Town - The Proteas face another pressure test in the third series-deciding ODI against Sri Lanka in Hambantota on Saturday.

The squad has regrouped following Wednesday's disappointing loss, and have welcomed the added pressure of a must-win game.

 "It's vitally important for us to be exposed to these situations," Proteas all-rounder JP Duminy said ahead of training in Hambantota on Friday.

"We are going to be playing a lot of one-day games leading up to the World Cup so the more we get put in these situations the better it will be for us. I think we are making good strides in each and every game and hopefully if we are confronted with these situations in the future we will know what to do."

Duminy says the batsmen have taken responsibility for the poor batting performance in Wednesday's match, and hopes there will be better decision-making in the crucial outing.

"I think it came down to poor shot selection," he admitted.  "I'm a case in point if you look at my dismissal. As batters we take full responsibility for those soft dismissals. We want to get it right in the next game so we will prepare accordingly."

The Proteas boast a good T20 record at the Mahinda Rajapaksa Stadium, having won three out of four matches played there in the last two years.  This will be their first day ODI at the venue, which has often provided both pace and bounce.

"It's going to be a good challenge for us," he said of the match. "The nice thing about this ground is that we have had good success in the past, even though it was in the T20 format, we'll take a lot of confidence from that.  We understand that conditions will be different, with it being a day game it might be a lot slower in the second innings. We have to adapt accordingly, but I see it as a good challenge for us."

Dale Steyn update

Fast bowler Dale Steyn is progressing positively following severe bruising to his right hand during Wednesday's match. He came through training with minimal discomfort on Friday, and is likely to be available for selection subject to his condition on Saturday morning.

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