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April 27, 2006
Stephen Fleming, New Zealand's captain, has urged his batsmen to put more runs on the board in the second Test against South Africa starting today. New Zealand collapsed to 120 all out in their second innings at Centurion, which South Africa won by 128 runs.
"We've got to get more runs on the board, that's been something that has concerned the side for a number of tests," Fleming told Reuters on the eve of the Test. "We've been able to bowl well enough to win matches against the West Indies and to compete against other sides but we've got to consistently get more runs from the top order. That gives the bowlers more time to recover, and it gives us more opportunities to win games rather than chase games."
The pitch at Newlands has shown bare patches, a fact that urged Fleming to mention the possible inclusion of Jeetan Patel, the offspinner, as Daniel Vettori's spin partner: "We think there are enough options with our all rounders to accommodate a second spinner."
Fleming added that Shane Bond, who will miss yet another test through injury, was not expected to be out of action long. "It's an inflammation injury that will settle down with a period of rest, we haven't been able to get him enough rest," he said. "I don't think it's a career-threatening injury, just annoying."
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
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