Amla upbeat about preparations
PORT-OF-SPAIN, Trinidad (CMC):
Opener Hashim Amla says Sunday's one-day tour match against the WICB President's XI was important in South Africa's build-up to the start of the Tri-Nations Series later this week, even though rain ruined the contest at Queen's Park Oval.
Opting to bat, the Proteas piled up 280 for nine off their 50 overs, and the President's XI were 127 for three in the 25th over when rained arrived to end the game prematurely.
The game was ruled a tie under Duckworth/Lewis.
"It was a great outing for us. When you come to a foreign country, the most important thing is having time on the legs, especially some of the guys who haven't played in a while," said the prolific opener, who top-scored with 92.
"We put up a good total on the board. Fortunately I managed to get some runs and a few of the lower order batsmen as well, which is quite handy."
The visitors were pegged back largely by rookie leg-spinner Damion Jacobs, who picked up four for 53 from his 10 overs.
"It was a really good sign that our bowlers got some time in the middle before it started raining. It was turning out to be a good game," Amla said.
"They bowled well. It started raining and the ball got really wet, but even then they bowled decently. Getting overs under the belt is the most important thing."
South Africa will join hosts West Indies and world champions Australia in Guyana for the Tri-Nations Series, which runs from June 3-26.
The series will move on to St Kitts from June 11-15 before winding up in Barbados.
Though the majority of the Proteas unit are coming off the Indian Premier League, which climaxed last Sunday, Amla said he did not foresee any major problems with the transition from Twenty20 cricket to the 50-overs format.
"I don't think (the difference) is that big. The only thing is that you have a lot of time to set the game up," the former captain said.
"You have to remind yourself that there is a lot of time still left in the game, but it's a lot easier to go from T20s to one-dayers than from a Test match."