Nasser Hussain has spoken of the need for his team to show "bottle" in the ICCKnockOut tournament in Nairobi. On the eve of England's quarter-final encounter with South Africa the England captain stressed the importance of dealing with the tension such a game can engender.
"Before our first game I told the boys to keep calm and keep their nerve and I will be doing that again in the morning."
"You could bowl a reasonably good over and go for 10. Good balls can be nicked and go away for four. But it is what you do next that is important. For example, in this game: if Lance Klusener comes at us, that is when we will need a bit of bottle about us."
"It is who handles it best when Tendulkar is coming at you, or when Allan Donald is steaming in, or Gough is doing the same. With bat or ball in hand, it is the people who stand up and are counted who are successful."
Ashley Giles is definitely out of Tuesday's match against South Africa. He has failed to recover from the calf strain sustained during the practise match against Australia, making way for a possible debut for Paul Grayson.
"We have not picked the side yet," stated Hussain in answer to queries about Grayson, "but it will not be whether it is Grayson or not, but whether we go for spin on this small ground."
"Bottle is why Paul was called up," Hussain continued, "because if there is one thing he does have about him, it is a bit of bottle."
Hussain was happy to concede that South Africa will be favourites for the match. "They have Donald back in their side," he said. "We know all about Klusener and Kallis. They give then great balance. They are a very good one-day side and will start favourites."
England named a squad of 12 for the game, with Grayson coming in for Alleyne as the only change from the first game.