ANDREW STRAUSS is confident his new-look England are about to go places in one-day cricket – and is hoping they can start by wrapping up their series against South Africa 3-1 today.
Strauss, who will collect his 100th cap if the rain stays away from Kingsmead, believes a more honest and well-rounded team is evolving under his captaincy and with Andy Flower as coach.
It was only at the start of this year that Strauss inherited the captaincy, later to learn it was his own permanently, after Kevin Pietersen had to forego the leadership.
Now, a year later, Strauss senses a new atmosphere in his camp.
“It’s always hard to put your finger on exactly why it’s different,” he said.
“But I feel we’re moving in the right direction, and I’m delighted with the excellent bunch of guys we’ve got.”
In the absence of injured all-rounder Andrew Flintoff and with Pietersen still making his way back to form after achilles surgery, England are – perhaps by necessity – more of a collective.
Strauss, however, clearly likes it that way.
“In the sport we play, there are always going to be people who are bigger characters than others or have bigger egos,” he accepts.
“But a good environment is able to take that into account and still let people express themselves and get the best out of themselves.”
Strauss’ team are on the verge of becoming only the second ever to beat South African hosts in an ODI series.
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