New Zealand desperate to rescue battered pride

New Zealand

New Zealand will seek to regain some pride after a battering in the Test series when they take on South Africa in three one-day internationals, starting in Paarl tomorrow.

"It's a new form of the game and half the group are a new set of faces as well," said seam bowler Kyle Mills, one of seven players in the squad who did not play in the two innings defeats suffered by New Zealand in the Test matches.

"Our one-day form has been pretty good. There is respect around the world that we are a quality white ball unit." It will nevertheless be a huge challenge for the BlackCaps, who were outclassed in the Test matches and will be up against eight of the players who humiliated the tourists in Cape Town earlier this week.

In New Zealand's favour is that the South African one-day team is not as settled as the Test outfit. Star all-rounder Jacques Kallis has been rested and other key players such as fast bowlers Dale Steyn and Morne Morkel are unlikely to play in all three matches. South Africa are likely to rotate their squad as they seek their best combination for the 50-overs form of the game ahead of the ICC Champions Trophy in England in June.

Four of their players have yet to play a one-day international, although Farhaan Behardien, Quinton de Kock and Aaron Phangiso have played in Twenty20 internationals, while Rory Kleinveldt has appeared in both T20 internationals and Test matches.

New Zealand will again be without disaffected former captain Ross Taylor and they too have new one-day caps in Mitchell McClenaghan, Colin Munro, Jimmy Neesham, Neil Wagner and Ronnie Hira. All, except Hira, have played against South Africa on the current tour -- McClenaghan, Munro and Neesham in the T20s and Wagner and Munro in the Test series. The venues for the three matches are in some of South Africa's smaller centres.

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