CAPE TOWN (Reuters) - Hard-hitting batsman David Miller has backed the new-look South Africa One-Day International squad to banish the memories of a disastrous World Cup campaign last year, ahead of a three-match home series with England starting at Newlands on Tuesday.
South Africa won only three of their nine matches at the global finals last year as England went on to be crowned world champions on home soil, and at the start of a new cycle ahead of the 2023 finals have refreshed their squad.
Batsmen Janneman Malan and JJ Smuts, wicketkeeper Kyle Verreynne, spinning all-rounder Bjorn Fortuin and seam bowler Lutho Sipamla are all fresh faces that will be led for the first time by captain Quinton de Kock.
“It’s exciting,” Miller told reporters. “It is not the normal squad everyone is used to seeing. From my side that is refreshing, it’s a new start.
“The guys that have come in must learn as quickly as possible. We are here to win, not to just see how things go.
“It’s an exciting time to be in South African cricket. The guys have got a lot of energy and are willing to learn.”
Miller has also welcomed the appointment of De Kock, who takes over from Faf du Plessis, the latter having been rested for the series along with fast bowler Kagiso Rabada.
“Quinny and I have come a long way. He is an unbelievable performer and thinks about things very simply.
“But I genuinely believe as he has got older, he has got a great feel on the ground during the game. A great understanding of what is going on and what to do.”
Miller hopes the selectors will back the squad that has been chosen beyond this series and give the players a fair run.
“It is about trying to find the best combination as early as possible and sticking with that. It is about doing the business on the park. It is about putting scores together as a batting unit.
“We are playing the world champions, but everybody is beatable. If we come with the right mindset it will be a really good series.”
Reporting By Nick Said