• The Proteas’ biggest challenge

    Hashim Amla says finding consistency with the bat will be South Africa’s biggest priority in the first two Tests against England.

    Both teams come into the four-match series on the back of series defeats and the Boxing Day Test in Durban has already been labelled as a crucial one.

    ‘For us it would be great to start on a winning note,’ Amla said. ‘Obviously not winning a Test in India was very disappointing. To find some consistency with the bat will be a top priority.

    ‘Once you get runs on the board it allows your bowlers to come into the game a lot more. Our bowling unit was exceptional in India and hopefully that will continue in this series.’

    South Africa, like England, are a team in transition with unsettled batting orders and whoever copes best in the conditions will likely come out on top.

    ‘We need to get as many runs on the board as possible. We are still searching for the right combinations so you will probably see a few changes here for however long it takes. Hopefully myself and everybody else gets runs on the board to make it easier for the bowlers.’

    Amla said any team with a good bowling attack always competes really well when touring South Africa.

    ‘Fortunately we have some of the best bowlers in the world at the moment. I feel it’s going to be a very, very close series. For us to beat them now after many years is certainly something that we are looking forward to, especially after our trip to India.’

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