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Graeme Smith's men have set high standards: CSA

cricket Updated: Dec 30, 2008 15:16 IST
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Cricket South Africa on Tuesday congratulated Greame Smith's men for their historic series win over Australia, describing the team as a committed unit that has set high standards in the game.

South Africa won the second Test by nine wickets to take an unassailable 2-0 lead over Australia for the first time since the early 1900s.

"There have been outstanding individual efforts such as by Graeme Smith, Dale Steyn, AB de Villiers, JP Duminy, and Paul Harris, which were coupled with outstanding catching and ground fielding," CSA CEO Gerald Majola said in a statement.

"But in the end, this was a team effort that begun four years ago when the Board of CSA accepted a three-strategic plan from Mickey Arthur to take the Proteas to the top and consequently appointed him as the national coach.

"Since then, we have witnessed the captain and team mature into a committed unit that has set high cricketing standards in Africa, Europe, Asia, Australia and the Caribbean," he added.

"We have seen a united effort by all players, coaches and administrators to strive for achieving CSA's vision of making cricket a truly national sport of winners."

Majola exuded confidence that the Proteas would carry on the winning streak in the coming matches.

"This Test series victory is the first hurdle against Australia and remaining are the third Test in Sydney, the away ODIs and the T20.

"Then on the horizon are the return Castle Test Series, two Standard Bank International Pro 20s, and the MTN ODI series in South Africa in the New Year.

"We are confident that the commitment of the Proteas, supported by their skilled management team and myriads of local fans, will carry them through to ultimate victory," he said.

CSA acting president of Dr Logan Naidoo also paid glowing tributes to the team.

"There has never been a better moment to say I am proud to be a South African.

"All special moments in our young democracy fades into insignificance at this very moment. On behalf of everyone in South Africa who have followed the rise of this young side led by Graeme and ably coached by Mickey Arthur, I can only say how blessed we are to have witnessed and been part of this moment in our history.

"There is no doubt in my mind that everyone in South Africa wakes up this morning to the fact the South Africa cricket is now the number one sport in the country," he said.