SA cricket coach Russell Domingo

Proteas boss Russell Domingo says his players are raring to go and “hungry to put in good Test performances”.

South Africa return to the five-day arena ahead of the first Test against New Zealand starting at Kingsmead on Friday.

The two-match series brings an end to a seven-month wait for action, which ended with the 280-run win against England in January.

And it kicks off of an 11-match season which also includes battles against bitter rivals Australia and Sri Lanka.

Domingo says: “We play 11 Tests this season and six are away, we don’t play a lot of Tests at home, it is the pinnacle for our players.

“We are excited about it and are looking forward to it, the players are hungry to put in good Test performances this season.”

Most of the squad has been busy with South Africa A and their respective CPL and English County sides and boss Domingo believes his manne are good to go.

Domingo says: “If you look at the list, [Dean] Elgar, [Temba] Bavuma, [Vernon] Philander, [Stephen] Cook, [Dane] Piedt have all just come back from Australia.

“They played two tough four-day games there and they played a couple in Zimbabwe. “[Hashim] Amla and [Faf] Du Plessis have been at the CPL, it’s a different format but they have been playing cricket... so there is no feeling, in my opinion, of being undercooked.”