Boult talks up Rabada as NZ prepare to face Proteas

Lance Klusener

Lance Klusener

Boult said he expects a hard encounter tomorrow but acknowledges it could have been even more hard had things panned out differently.

"There have always been exciting games between New Zealand and South Africa over the past World Cups".

"Obviously, it's a big game for them".

And that is obviously true for South Africa's entire World Cup campaign as well.

"It's not driving us in any respect", Kiwi swing bowling ace Trent Boult told reporters in response to a question about virtually eliminating South Africa who have had just one win from five matches so far and are in a desperate situation where they can not afford another defeat if they want to make the playoffs.

Anything but a victory will nearly certainly mean that they do not qualify for the semi-finals of the 2019 World Cup. Their match against India was abandoned due to rain. We're up against tough competition in New Zealand but we'll be trying our best.

"The great thing about our squad is that we have flexibility and options within the 15 so that if we do have to make changes because of pitch conditions or opposition we can do that and I think it's just the way things have fallen in the first three games that we've had some injury niggles and haven't had a full squad to pick from, but I'm pretty sure we'll have a full squad to pick from here".

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"I think we've got to respect all of them, to be honest", he said.

'The 2015 semi-final at Eden Park was one of the best games the Kiwis have played and got a lot of attention back home and did a lot for the game.

Pressure and the Proteas have not often worked well together at World Cups, and on Wednesday that pressure will be at a maximum.

"There's no way we're not going to bowl short balls, but we need to hit our lengths very well, test the batsmen's techniques, that's what we're good at and if we stick to that then we will do as well as we're expected to", he said. "It's a must win in their tournament", said Boult. I just try and keep it simple, that's the way I prepare; everyone just keeps doing whatever they've been doing.

"We have to expect they'll be eager to come out and perform".

Play on Thursday starts at 11:30 (SA time).

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