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Mark Boucher Wants to Build Belief in 'New' South Africa

South Africa head coach Mark Boucher is working to instil a new mindset and work ethic in the side ahead of the first Test against England in Pretoria.

Reuters |December 21, 2019, 12:25 PM IST
Mark Boucher Wants to Build Belief in 'New' South Africa

South Africa head coach Mark Boucher is working to instil a new mindset and work ethic in the side ahead of the first Test against England in Pretoria starting on Boxing Day, admitting his team is short on confidence.

South Africa have lost their last five Tests, including two shock home losses to Sri Lanka and three heavy defeats in India, but the arrival of Boucher and an army of experienced technical team members has the potential to change their fortunes.

"One thing I know about South Africans, they are resilient," Boucher told reporters on Friday. "They have got that bouncebackability and we need to get that into the heads of the players.

"It's been very good so far, we have pushed the guys a bit. We have spoken about being open to a few changes, and the guys are really keen to turn around the whole view of South African cricket.

"They came in with a really good attitude and ready for a few challenges that we put to them."

Batting consultant Jacques Kallis will compliment Boucher and assistant coach Enoch Nkwe, while Charl Langeveldt has been drafted in as bowling coach and Paul Harris will work with the spinners.

"Having Jacques, he is the most capped Test player in this country and probably the greatest cricketer that has ever lived, so that is invaluable experience," Boucher added.

"It’s like preparing for an exam, if you prepare well then you walk into the exam feeling confident.

"We’ve had some good chats. It has been very focused on this particular series against the English. I am very happy where we are as we built towards the first Test."

TEST CHAMPIONSHIP

South Africa have yet to gain any points in the new Test Championship, but Boucher says that is far from his mind. All he is focused on is the first session of the opening Test in the four-match series.

"We are not even thinking of the Test Championship. I am only focused on what is important now and giving guys good direction on where we want to go in that first session of the first Test match, the rest will take care of itself.

"We are trying to instil a good work ethic and a good intensity at training, once we do that, we can take that into the middle."

Team Rankings

Rank Team Points Rating
1 India 5046 120
2 New Zealand 3241 112
3 South Africa 3177 102
4 England 4593 102
5 Australia 3672 102
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Rank Team Points Rating
1 England 6745 125
2 India 7364 121
3 New Zealand 4837 112
4 Australia 5543 111
5 South Africa 5193 110
see more
Rank Team Points Rating
1 Pakistan 8366 270
2 Australia 6986 269
3 England 5568 265
4 South Africa 4720 262
5 India 10071 258
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