England to focus on power hitting, greater athleticism against Proteas in ODIs

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Bloemfontein (S. Africa), Nov.6 (ANI): The England cricket team management has said the players will be asked to focus on power hitting and on greater athleticism in the field when they take on the Proteas in a one-day series starting from today here.

The tour opens with a 50-over floodlit game against Diamond Eagles and, the visitors are keen to reverse years of underachievement.

According to The Telegraph, Andy Flower, the team director, is keen for England to build on the best aspects of their passage to the semi-finals of the Champions Trophy in September and is committed to giving extra priority to the one-day format.

It has also been clearly stated that fielding below the required standing will not be tolerated.

"Good fielding is part and parcel of the game nowadays and if you cannot do it, you have to be exceptional in other areas," Paul Collingwood, England's best fielder, said.

"When you look around the field in practice now, you can see our guys faster across the ground. One-day cricket is about creating pressure in the field," he added.

he Eagles will provide stiff opposition for an England XI today. They have won all three of the domestic events over the past four seasons and knocked Sussex out of the Champions League on a Super Over eliminator last month.

But they will be without Ryan McLaren, who is with the South Africa squad preparing for a one-day series against Zimbabwe.

England have beaten South Africa in the past five completed 50-over matches, including a 4-0 win in England in 2008, when South Africa were still in celebratory mood after clinching the Test series.

"We can take confidence from our record," Collingwood said.

The one-day squad is as follows: A J Strauss (Middlesex, captain), J M Anderson (Lancashire), T T Bresnan (Yorkshire), S C J Broad (Nottinghamshire), P D Collingwood (Durham), A N Cook (Essex), J L Denly (Kent), S I Mahmood (Lancashire), E J G Morgan (Middlesex), G Onions (Durham), K P Pietersen (Hampshire), M J Prior (Sussex), A U Rashid (Yorkshire), G P Swann (Nottinghamshire), I J L Trott (Warwickshire), L J Wright (Sussex). (ANI)

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