Game time in England series key for Proteas

Russell Domingo (Gallo Images)
Russell Domingo (Gallo Images)

Cape Town - Proteas head coach Russell Domingo says the England one-day series results will be key to how the Proteas perform in the ICC Champions Trophy, but equally important will be giving every player a chance to play.

READ: Fitness, baby to curtail Faf's England tour?

Domingo spoke to the media at OR Tambo International airport on Tuesday and emphasised the importance of giving players the opportunity to adapt and gain confidence heading into the ICC event starting on June 1.

Prior to that, the Proteas play England in a three-match ODI series, which gets underway in Leeds on Wednesday, May 24.

"Every international game is important and the one-day series in England is important for us," said Domingo.

"Results are important, but also getting players some game time leading into the tournament.

"It's about getting used to the (English) conditions and there are players who haven't played cricket in the last couple of months.

"We will use those three ODIs to make sure that everybody has some game time leading into the Champions Trophy."

Domingo made it clear that the Proteas, the No 1-ranked one-day side in the world, won't focus too much on strategy when it comes to defeating England, but rather on their opponents in the Champions Trophy.

"England is most obviously one of the in-form sides... they're not in our group so they don't concern us at the moment.

"Our focus is very much on the teams in our group and making sure we are prepared well to beat those sides.

"Although we know England are a quality side, we haven't thought too much about them."

Following the one-day series, the Proteas will move on to the Champions Trophy, where they are drawn in Group B alongside India, Sri Lanka and Pakistan.

The Proteas will hope to clinch only their second Champions Trophy title, after winning the inaugural ICC tournament in Dhaka, Bangladesh in 1998, when it was known as the ICC Knock-Out.

Domingo's charges begin their ICC Champions Trophy campaign against Sri Lanka on Saturday, June 3 at The Oval in London.

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