Cricket: Woolmer plans changes for South African team

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The Independent Online
SOUTH AFRICA are planning to utilise their full squad resources during their final two qualifying matches after securing control of their own destiny with Saturday's victory over England.

The tournament favourites are considering using the four players left out on Saturday - Alan Dawson, Nicky Boje, Dale Benkenstein and Derek Crookes - during the next two matches to ensure everyone in the squad has had match practice before the second stage.

Left-arm spinner Boje featured in their opening victory over India, but none of the others have yet made their World Cup bow. Coach Bob Woolmer is keen to give them a run and rest some of his senior players such as Allan Donald, Jacques Kallis and Shaun Pollock.

Woolmer must decide whether to promote the explosive all-rounder Lance Klusener, who hammered 52 off 45 balls against Sri Lanka and 48 off 40 deliveries against England batting in the lower order.

But their captain, Hansie Cronje, is keen to preserve his current status, insisting: "It's nice for a captain to have batting all the way through, and later in the tournament he might be the one struggling, and it would be nice to see someone else get some runs too. A guy like Lance is a terrific finisher of an innings like Michael Bevan, whether you are batting first or second, and at the moment I think he's doing nicely where he is."

Scotland take on Bangladesh in Edinburgh today in a game their coach, Jim Love, has earmarked as the one Scotland must win to achieve their ultimate goal of international one-day status. A win after good dress rehearsals against Australia and Pakistan, could make Scotland's case watertight.

"Bangladesh has been given one-day status and if we beat them tomorrow there will be no excuses for us not getting it either," Love said.

With cold and blustery conditions predicted, the home side have a marked advantage. However, Scotland lost a World Cup qualifier against today's opponents last year and opener Mehrab Hossain is the only man on the field with an international century to his credit.

"Nobody else knows too much about Bangladesh - but we do," said Love. "I'm not sure they will be ready for a cold day in Edinburgh."

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