January 27, 2020 / 2:48 AM / 25 days ago

Curran confident of series victory over South Africa

JOHANNESBURG (Reuters) - Fast bowler Sam Curran said England are confident of bowling out South Africa in the final test to seal a memorable 3-1 series victory on Monday.

Cricket - New Zealand v England - Second Test - Seddon Park, Hamilton, New Zealand - November 30, 2019 England's Sam Curran in action REUTERS/Ross Setford/Files

England have set the struggling home side a stiff 466-run victory target to level the series, and Curran said the tourists would be fired up on a wicket that has provided assistance for the seam bowlers throughout the match.

“A lead of 465 on that kind of wicket, we feel we are in a strong position to hopefully win the test. The ball did nip around consistently through the day, so I think there is a lot of confidence in our group,” Curran told reporters.

“Runs on the board is nice for scoreboard pressure. It’s nice for us bowlers to go out there tomorrow on that wicket, especially with the carry where we know that if we can nick off their batsmen, it is generally going to get to the slips.”

Curran said the variable bounce would also play into the hands of the England bowlers, who have not allowed South Africa past 284 in their previous seven innings in the series.

“There are some balls that are keeping low and others jumping up a bit, so I am sure their batsmen will be less confident than we are with the ball,” he said.

“The plan will be to bowl nice and tight, challenge the stumps and bring the edge and lbws in. We have got our plans for their batters and we are confident.”

England dismissed the home side for 183 in their first innings, with fast bowler Mark Wood claiming 5-46 in his second test back after a long injury layoff.

“It was a great bowling performance. Woody got his five-for, and everyone is so chuffed for him,” Curran said.

“He brings so much energy to the group and for him to come back into the team and play back-to-back test matches is exciting for us as a group and we are all very happy for him.”

Reporting By Nick Said, editing by Pritha Sarkar

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