New Zealand vs South Africa : Proteas fire or Kiwis soar high?
New Zealand vs South Africa Live : It was Grant Elliot great hit into the grandstand off Dale Steyn that guided New Zealand into their first ever final to set up the Trans-Tasman clash for CWC 2015. Come CWC 19 World Cup; the stakes, emotions are not so high for New Zealand, but Proteas need every single breath to march into the semi-final of the World Cup. Thus New Zealand vs South Africa match becomes very crucial for Proteas.
Teams march in the tournament so far
New Zealand has been undefeated in the competition so far with victories over Bangladesh, Afganistan and Sri Lanka. For New Zealand Lockie Ferguson has taken eight wickets while Ross Taylor has scored 130 runs with Kane Williamson is leading from the front with a score of 40,79*. Williamson scored a century in his last outing at this ground and will look to play captain knock again with a significant score to set up the game for Kiwis with the bat.
South Africa’s Journey
While for the Rainbow Nations, things have soured since the arrival in England. After Dale Steyn was ruled out of the World Cup the news of AB Devillers giving his availability at the last moment for the World Cup further kept the South African team in the news for all wrong reasons.
The CSA board have to be given credit for coming out open about the situation and being transparent in regards to the selection process for the World Cup. His 1207 runs at the cricket’s mega event is the highest for the South Africa batsman but his inclusion meant Van der Dussen who had put in hard yards in domestic cricket and had strong start to the international career with an average of 88.25 before the World Cup miss out .That would have been unfair to not just him each and every player sweating out in domestic setup and to Van der Dussen credit, he looked good in few outings so far.
What can be expected today?
The washout against West Indies has somewhat hampered the chances of Proteas, but win over Afghanistan by huge margin would have given the team much needed boosts for tighter roads ahead, and from now on every match is a must-win game for the team. South African would look to avenge the loss in CWC 2015 by drawing the first blood.
For South Africa, Quinton De Kock has been their prolific batsman with 186 runs at an average of 46.50. Imran Tahir again leads the wicket packs of the Proteas with eight scalps. While Andile Pheuklawayo, Chris Morris has stepped up at different occasions for the team with six wickets apiece and quite a decent economy rate for a 4-5th bowler of 5.48 since CWC 2015 shows the decent success ratio.
Kagiso Rabada though, has not been among the wickets, has bowled without luck to take five wickets. The Africans will welcome the inclusion of fully fit Lungi Ngidi who took three wickets for Proteas in the first encounter and injuring himself in the game against Bangladesh and getting ruled out. A bowler to complement KG Rabada at the other end was sorely missed.And his presence will make life difficult for batsman with Rabada-Ngidi operating in tandem.
South Africa’s batting
Biggest disappointment has been Hashim Amla, who is yet to show his prolific self in the tournament. His best came against Afghanistan the last match with 41* off 83 balls. Perhaps, the best is yet to come or is it start of the end to an outstanding career of Hashim Amla? An ordinary World Cup will settle the dust once for all. Even Amla’s selection was much over emotions and experience than the current form as his form dwindled against pace with his average in 2018, 2019 being 31.28, 28,80. Faf Du Plessis has to put his hand up if South Africa have to stay in the tournament and show the same form which saw him become one of best ODI batsmen since CWC 2015 averaging 58.81.No wonder, Virat Kohli wanted Faf Du Plessis in his team.
Faf would wish the game doesn’t get its tail-ender. As batting of Proteas (7-11 batting position), average 16.42 lowest of all top-ranked teams. New Zealand would also consider the leg-spin option of Ish Sodhi given Proteas weakness against leg spinner .
Pitch Report and Venue
The game is likely to be affected by the rain with clouds hovering over the ground with no chance of sunshine. The temperature will be between 12-15 degree Celsius. The average score at the venue is 295 in last 5 One-day. But both teams have won chasing till now, so will either side take a gamble to bat first on winning the toss, remains to be seen.
Likely Playing Eleven
Colin Munro, Martin Guptill, Kane Williamson (C), Ross Taylor, Tom Latham (wk), James Neesham, Colin de Grandhomme, Mitchell Santner, Matt Henry, Lockie Ferguson/Ish Sodhi, Trent Boult
Quinton de Kock (wk), Hashim Amla, Aiden Markram, Faf du Plessis (C), Rassie van der Dussen, David Miller, Andile Phehlukwayo, Chris Morris, Kagiso Rabada, Imran Tahir, Lungi Ngidi
Both Teams Head to head
Head to head in the World Cup, and the Kiwis have won 5 matches so far with South Africa coming out triumph on two occasions. Since the CWC 2015, the two sides played eight ODIs with South Africa winning five of them, including both series deciders and two teams last, met, was in March 2017, back at Eden Park when South Africa won by six wickets. But the stocks are higher this team with the more fabulous prize at the centre of the battle-World Cup!
While South Africa has three points from five games, New Zealand is in a position of strength with seven points from four games. So the game is must-win for the Proteas.
It’s 50-50 at the moment with New Zealand middle order having been untested against quality bowling lineup.While the question for South Africa is can they rise above mental beating throughout the tournament.The side that bats well will win not to forget with rain looming around, DRS will come into play.
Title: New Zealand vs South Africa Live : Proteas fire or Kiwis soar high?