Graeme Smith has said South Africa's match against Sri Lanka on Tuesday is their most crucial of their tour. Yesterday, Australia swept aside Sri Lanka thanks to a brutal hundred from Adam Gilchrist which booked the hosts' place in the final of the VB Series.
"It's important for us to make sure that tomorrow's game is the most important game on the tour for us," Smith said, "and if we get through that one then we move on to Friday and we will (also) make sure that one counts. With the young team, it's important not to look too far ahead. It's (important) to concentrate game by game and improve on everything game by game."
South Africa, on eight points, are one point adrift of Sri Lanka but hold the significant advantage of having played two fewer games. Including Tuesday's encounter, they have four left to play while Sri Lanka have two. Either team could therefore qualify for the final, which is spurring South Africa's captain on.
"The sums just mean that we need to win," Smith said. "Obviously Australia's win last night has left them in a pretty solid position in the competition. "We've got three or four games this week, starting tomorrow, so we want to make them count."
Justin Kemp was injured after being hit above the knee during nets practice on Monday but Smith said it was not a major concern. "Team management says it doesn't look serious and we'll see how he responds to treatment tonight," he said.
Smith, whose own form has been poor throughout the series, said the early stages of the match were vital for either side. "I think those first 15 overs whether we bowl or bat are going to be crucial to the game."