Proteas 'not complacent' ahead of T20 series
Proteas coach Russell Domingo is talking the Black Caps up ahead of their Twenty20 series, saying New Zealand's comfortable win over South Africa A was proof there could be no complacency.
The new-look Black Caps were workmanlike in dismissing the back-up South African side by 24 runs in their warm-up T20 yesterday.
Now the focus falls on the opening international in Durban on Saturday morning (NZ time).
Domingo, freshly appointed to look after the short-form of the game for the Proteas, wants no hiccups and believes he has his players in the right head-space.
"There was never going to be an issue of complacency because New Zealand are a dangerous side. In my mind yesterday's result has very little bearing on what will happen (in the series) because we knew New Zealand would be tough opposition for us," Domingo said as he addressed a major media conference for the first time yesterday.
"We were probably fortunate to win our T20 series in New Zealand (earlier this year). We were one-all and at the last game at Eden Park they needed 14 off 19 balls and they ended up losing the game. It was a series that they probably should have won. We know that there is very little between the two sides, particularly in this format of the game."
Domingo wants a rub-off from the Proteas' impressive test form.
South Africa are ranked No 1 in the five-day format and only fifth on the T20s, leaving the new coach with plenty of improvement.
"The Test culture that has developed over the last few years is something that we are striving to take through into the shorter formats. It's not going to happen overnight, it is not something that we can do over three or four days.
"It will be a process but we are feeding it through in small drips at the moment. We are trying to incorporate bits of the Test side while also doing some things a little bit differently because it is a different group of players, you need to manage the younger players differently.
"The longer we have together, the more information we will be able to provide these younger guys as to how things run in the national side."
The Proteas have taken a similar approach to the Black Caps for this series, introducing some fresh blood after their disappointing T20 World Cup in Sri Lanka.
Domingo senses their keen attitude.
"The guys have worked really hard these last couple of days, so it's a massively exciting time, not just for me but for some of the younger players as well," he said.