Batting coach Dale Benkenstein believes South Africa needs to adjust to the World Cup pressure and put up an improved performance with the bat to bring their campaign back on track following three successive defeats. South Africa suffered losses against England, Bangladesh and India before getting their first point of the World Cup following a washed out match against the West Indies on Monday. “The message is that the batters have got to step up and we haven’t. I feel like we are batting well but we just haven’t done it long enough. Everyone has got in. We have had opportunities to have a hundred partnerships and win matches but we haven’t done it,” Benkenstein was quoted as saying by the ICC website.
“We try and play quite an aggressive form of cricket. Scores are much higher than they used to be. Teams are scoring big totals so when you are in and you are dominating, you’ve got to try and make the most of it. “Sometimes we don’t get that balance right. We try and accelerate maybe a bit too fast rather than getting our heads down and ticking it over and the batters getting us more to the end of the game,” Benkenstein added.
South Africa next will play Afghanistan in Cardiff. Given the format of the tournament, where each team plays the other nine sides only once, Benkenstein said spontaneous planning could be the key in their remaining five games of the league stage. “The difference in tournaments to international cricket is that in regular series you play the same opposition four or five times so you have an opportunity to start slow, to sum them up and then you can take them down,” he said.
“Here, you are playing one-off games. You are playing on different wickets and against different teams in every match.” He assured South African fans that the team would not leave any stone unturned as they bid to turn their fortunes around. “We are practicing as hard as we can and trying to give the batters as much confidence as we can. We’re making them remember when they played well and that you can’t just become bad players in a week. “I really feel we are one game away from getting all those things right. If we get that right, the confidence levels will be up there and then we may peak at the right time.