Arthur prepares for clean slate

South Africa's coach, Mickey Arthur, has hinted that some of his senior members may have played their last one-day internationals following the 4-0 one-day series defeat by England.
England completely dominated the one-day series after losing the Tests 2-1 in August. Bad weather in Cardiff on Wednesday denied them the chance to claim a historic 5-0 series win, as rain allowed just three overs of play.

Three of South Africa's most experienced cricketers - Jacques Kallis, Herschelle Gibbs and Makhaya Ntini - all endured a difficult limited-overs series. Gibbs did manage 74 from 75 balls at Lord's on Sunday, but he was the only batsman to lose his wicket on Wednesday, falling for just 3 to complete a disappointing series.

Arthur conceded it may be time for a change of direction in one-day cricket. "I'm going to take a couple of weeks to go away and reflect and then come to those selection decisions," he said. "We've got five one-dayers at the end of October and early November against Kenya and Bangladesh, which will give us a good base to start from with a young new side."

One possible route is for South Africa to try and encourage some of the Kolpak players in county cricket back to their home country. Arthur has been keeping tabs on their performances while he was on tour, with the likes of Ryan McLaren at Kent catching his eye.

"We'll look at the squad composition closer to the time," he said. "We were missing some key personnel and we are trying to identify a brand of cricket to play in one-day cricket and then identify players to pick to play that kind of brand.

"In the past we have been lucky to have a lot of multi-skilled players which has made it seem that we had 12 or even 13 players on the field at the same time," Arthur said. "This is what England had in the recent series with Andrew Flintoff giving them two players in one.

"We will now have to decide whether we can continue to follow the multi-skilled route or whether we need to go for pure specialists." Arthur's thoughts came after captain Graeme Smith admitted that South Africa's ODI team had failed to fill the void created by Shaun Pollock's retirement.

South Africa's lacklustre conclusion took some of the gloss off their first Test series win in England since 1965, and Arthur admitted he had put too much emphasis on winning the Tests, although he denied the one-day series had deflated his squad.

"We compartmentalised the two series which were played by slightly different sides," he said. "We had goals and objectives set for our Test team which I think we conquered. The one-day series we always knew was going to be a bit of a struggle.

"We're disappointed about the one day series but very excited about what we achieved in the Tests. The one thing I would criticise myself about on this tour was putting too much emphasis on winning the Test series. When we won it we felt we had achieved our goal."