The Proteas Women are still riding the wave of excitement from their emphatic six-wicket win over Sri Lanka in the opening match of the ICC Women’s World Twenty20 (T20) Sri Lanka 2012. They take on New Zealand in what will be a all-or-nothing match for their opposition on Friday.
SA captain, Mignon du Preez is satisfied that her side have done all the preparation possible going into this very important match.
“I think we’re in a very good space, the girls are very happy over our win yesterday and now we have some momentum going into our match against New Zealand tomorrow,” she commented.
The White Ferns, as the New Zealand women are fondly known, have two of their batters in the top ten Reliance ICC T20 batting rankings and two more in the top 20 Reliance ICC T20 bowling rankings. This does not concern the South Africans, however, as they believe it will be the Kiwis who have more to prove than they do.
“They have been in the last two semi-finals of the tournament and will, therefore, have more to prove than us. We are the underdogs but this is the best prepared that we have ever been for any World Cup and I think the girls are ready,” Du Preez continued.
The team’s fitness and successful adaptation to the Sri Lankan conditions played a big part in their triumphant opening match. Fitness coach Megan Dutton attributes this to the team’s winning tour of Bangladesh prior to their arrival in Sri Lanka.
“The team have done exceptionally well, having managed a very challenging tour in Bangladesh for two weeks. This definitely prepared them for the Sri Lankan conditions better than anything else could have. Their fitness and skill preparation has definitely added to the fact that they can handle the more challenging sub-continent environment. The heat and humidity is something that any touring side would have to acclimatize to. We have conquered that test with no issues,” she said.
The match starts at 6:30am (South African time) at Galle Cricket Ground. If South Africa win this match they are almost guaranteed a place in the semi-final.
“We are in a position to get our side to the semis which is our goal. If we believe in ourselves and back ourselves, we can go far. I believe that nothing is impossible for us and we’ll give it our all and hopefully come out on top,” Du Preez concluded.