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Expect New Zealand to engage in sledging: De Villiers

Sentinel Digital DeskBy : Sentinel Digital Desk

  |  24 March 2015 12:00 AM GMT

Auckland, March 23: South African skipper A.B. de Villiers believes there will be on-field sledging as they will be "expecting the unexpected" from a formidable New Zealand side in the semi-fils of the cricket World Cup at Eden Park on Tuesday.

"New Zealand is normally a gentlemanlike team to play against, but sometimes they do come out and go for what they want, and we're expecting that," de Villiers said at the pre-match media conference on Monday.

"We're expecting the unexpected. In knockout games things don't always go your way. In World Cups they don't always go your way. Whatever gets thrown at us tomorrow, I believe we have the right personnel to deal with that."

The Proteas will be spoilt for choice choosing their third seamer as they will have both Kyle Abbott and Vernon Philander to pick from, which the skipper believes will be a tough decision to take.

"Yeah, a difficult selection for us. Well, the whole squad is ready to go, and there are a few boys that have put up their hands in the World Cup, so it's difficult.

"It's really difficult, especially after a win like the last one. It's tough to change the squad and the team that played. But we might have to have a look at a couple of combitions, a couple of possibilities that might strengthen our team," he said.

Asked what makes him confident about the match, given South Africa's history of choking in big games in the quadrennial event, he said: "Yeah, there has been a lot of emphasis on our past and South Africa not doing well at World Cups. We don't mind that too much."

"I've gone through the whole package of feeling emotiol about it, fighting against it, then accepting it, then fighting again. Honestly I'm not putting emphasis on that at this World Cup at all."

He said his team is confident and are approaching the crunch match with a positive frame of mind. IANS

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