Proteas captain Dean Elgar says pride and the opportunity to still qualify for the ICC World Test Championship (WTC) final are two major driving factors. This as the Proteas prepare to face Australia in the third and last Test of their series in Sydney starting on Wednesday.

The clash at the SCG is a dead rubber after the hosts won the first two matches of the series. All that the South Africans can now hope for is a consolation victory. Although a win will also keep them alive in the hunt for a place in that WTC decider later this year.

Elgar and his charges are presently placed fourth behind the Australians, India and Sri Lanka. A win for the home side in Sydney will guarantee them a place in the final.


“There’s plenty to play for,” the Proteas skipper told the media ahead of the game.

“We’re playing for pride, we’re playing for a potential place in the WTC final. So we’ve also got a lot to play for.

“That’s a massive incentive for us and for me you play every Test match like it’s your last. Hopefully we can put on a better spectacle this time. We always want to play good Test cricket and be a thorn in the side of the opposition. We’ll be aiming to be better again this time.”

Temba Bavuma of the Proteas
Temba Bavuma of the Proteas


South Africa has been disappointing with the bat throughout the series, especially the top order. Barring some exceptions like Kyle Verreynne and Temba Bavuma, Elgar believes the batters need to be far better in this game.

“You can’t hide in Test cricket and the top five. We obviously need to find a way to deal with and negate the demands of batting discipline in Test cricket.”

Theunis de Bruyn will miss the match due to a paternity leave. This means there will be at least one change to the line-up.

“I think Kyle’s been brilliant for us at six and moving him around I don’t think is going to help us or help him at all and I don’t think it’s fair.”


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