Aiden Markram relieved after South Africa snap losing streak against Australia ahead of World Cup
Aiden Markram expressed his relief after helping South Africa to victory in the third ODI in Potchefstroom against Australia that keeps the five-match series alive.
The hosts were blanked 3-0 in the T20 series, in which Makram was captain, while then also falling to defeat in the first two ODIs against the tourists.
The Proteas were desperate for a win and prevailed by 111 runs on Tuesday after amassing total of 338-6 before bowling Australia out for 227.
Markram struck an unbeaten 74-ball 102, just his second hundred in the ODI format, and said the team played more to the standards they know they can.
"Ultimately, we played better cricket as team," Markram told reporters after the game.
"It was a tricky sort of wicket, you never really felt in. There are obviously still areas to improve on, but we're much closer to the standards we set ourselves.
"If we're playing close to those standards, we'll be competing well and doing nicely as a team.
"It was a nice turnaround. There's a lot of relief. We pride ourselves on being a competitive nation."
The right-handed batter admitted that the losing streak had affected him but also praised the group for bouncing back in a must-win encounter.
The Proteas will need that sort of character heading into the World Cup that starts in India early next month.
Markram added: "When you're struggling, it affects the human and the cricketer. It's not nice letting the people of your country down.
"What also is a major plus for us is that it's good to know that we've got the character to turn it around in a must-win game."
The fourth ODI of the five-match series against Australia takes place in Centurion on Friday.