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South Africa A to provide first real test

England will enter, albeit briefly, Twenty20 mode today. Although the shortest form of the game is threatening the takeover of Planet Cricket, it remains the infrequently visiting cousin in the international arena.

After a match against South Africa A today, England will play two full-scale internationals next week. But they will then have only one more match before the next World Twenty20 in West Indies in April. All the matches in the next week are likely to be played before full houses.

England are in tremendous heart after their cruises in the opening pair of 50-over warm-up games on the tour and have looked decidedly purposeful. They will be led in the Twenty20 games by Paul Collingwood. South Africa A, however, are likely to provide a sterner examination of England's newly launched one-day blueprint.

The home side will be led by Justin Ontong and will include fast bowler Morne Morkel, who is pressing for a return to the Test side.

England probable: J Denly, AN Cook, IJL Trott, PD Collingwood, EJG Morgan, MJ Prior, LJ Wright, TT Bresnan, GP Swann, SI Mahmood, JM Anderson.