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Proteas not carried away with win

South Africa has downplayed the significance of its comfortable eight-wicket win over a sluggish Australia in thier Twenty20 warm-up match at a packed Centurion .

With the two sides a strong chance to meet in the final stages of the Twenty20 World Championship, the tournament hosts on Sunday looked in compete control as they overhauled Australia's 8-179 with five balls to spare at a packed Centurion.

Proteas skipper Graeme Smith (89no off 61 balls) and AB de Villiers (65 from 35) starred in the run chase after tailender Mitchell Johnson had earlier smashed an unbeaten 30 off 12 balls to at least ensure Australia set a competitive target.

De Villiers said any win over Australia was "important" but, as the game was only a practice match, he didn't believe it gave his side any psychological edge heading into the tournament.

Australia coach Tim Nielsen was meanwhile keen to find a silver lining in the loss, which followed Australia's four-wicket win over New Zealand in Benoni on Saturday.

Andrew Symonds again impressed, striking 45 off 26 balls a day after his 70 against the Kiwis, but Nielsen was more pleased with the contribution of his lower order, with Brad Hogg (28) and Johnson, who added 41 from the final 18 balls with Nathan Bracken (11no), the standouts.

"There might be some benefits in the fact that the lower order did get a bat because, if we need them later in the tournament, they've had a bit of a chance to have a hit," said Nielsen.

"We're glad there's a silver lining. And it was good for us just to get another three or four overs for each bowler in a competitive environment."

Australia's top order again failed to fire - after being 3-18 against NZ, they were 3-21 against South Africa - but given the nature of Twenty20 cricket, Nielsen was not overly concerned.

"That's just the benefit of experience, they don't tend to panic too much, they've been there before," Nielsen said.

"You'd like all your players to have a good warm-up, batsmen getting runs and bowlers getting wickets, but that's not going to happen all the time, so as long as they understand where they're at and are working towards Wednesday (against Zimbabwe in their first game) that's the most important thing."

The match also featured a trial run of the bowl-out proceedings which will decide tied games throughout the tournament.

Australia won 3-2, with Brett Lee hitting the stumps with his side's sixth delivery in sudden-death.

"It's interesting isn't it, it kind of matches the game a little bit, to think you can win a game of cricket by one ball hitting the stumps is a bit different to the normal," said Nielsen.

"It's exciting, but it will be a different if there's an actual result on it. The boys seemed pretty relaxed, and Iif they know they're going to win or lose the game, there's going to be a bit of pressure on them, a bit like the soccer penalty shootout."

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source - foxsports.com.au

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