S.Africa trip up even before the ‘choke’ this time round - GulfToday

S.Africa trip up even before the ‘choke’ this time round


This picture of South Africa’s Imran Tahir more or less is indicative of the position of the team – on the mat, in this World Cup – with only a faint chance of advancing to the knockouts.

New Delhi: This edition of the World Cup has seen South Africa failing to even get started, much like their performance at home in the 2003 edition. Despite having world-class players like Faf du Plessis, Kagiso Rabada, Quinton de Kock and Hashim Amla in their squad, the Proteas’ journey in the ongoing tournament has been something which they would like to forget at the earliest.

Before the World Cup, most of the cricket pundits were off the view that du Plessis’ men would be the fourth team which will end up playing the semis -- India, England and Australia being the other three.

Their campaign however started on a horrendous note wherein injuries to their key players like Dale Steyn and Lungi Ngidi just didn’t help their cause. Result, they went on to lose their first three games. In their tournament opener, they were literally thrashed by hosts England.

From that game, their confidence took such a beating that they lost to Bangladesh in their next game, a defeat that dented their morale to the core.

They surrendered before a strong Indian bowling line-up in their next game in Southampton. Barring Chris Morris, none of the batsmen were able to tackle Jasprit Bumrah. They were left bemused before the duo of Yuzvendra Chahal and Kuldeep Yadav and were restricted to a below-par total of 227 which the Indians chased down riding on an unbeaten ton from Rohit Sharma.

The Proteas managed to open their account as their fourth game against West Indies got washed out and points were shared. In their next game against Afghanistan, their bowlers came to the party as they bowled out the Asian team for 131 and then went on to chase the target.

However, a poor show against New Zealand followed.

With just three points from six games, South Africa are almost down and out of the ongoing tournament. Although, the doors for the semi-finals have still not been mathematically shut, it would require a great set of extra-ordinary results going their way if they have to end up in the top four after what has been a horrid run to say the least.

Indo-Asian News Service

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