Sunday, 14 June 2009

South Africa As A Team

Well last night, in the first encounter of the day namely the match between the West Indies and South Africa, South Africa not only maintained their winning habit and in the process continue their winning streak to be one of the teams in the tournament that have been unbeaten so far, but also showed the world once again that cricket is a game consisting of eleven players and not just a bowler and a batsman like the West Indies did. If one could give a close look at the scorecard of the match between the West Indies and South Africa, it could be easily observed that if not for Lendi Simmons, none of the West Indian batsmen really stood to the challenge.

Out of the score of 163 put up on the board by the West Indies, 77 of them solely belonged to Lendi Simmons. Meaning that the remaining eight batsmen put up a mere 86 runs at just above 10 a piece. It was frustrating to see just three of the West Indian batsmen cross the double digit mark, with one of them (Suliemann Benn) being a tail ender. There were solid batsmen in Ramnaresh Sarwan, Chris Gayle, Fletcher, Dwayne Bravo and Shivnarine Chandrapaul who could have shown their powers with the willow. But, unfortunately that was not the case. Had one of these aforementioned batsmen stood to the Proteas' bowling, the result might have been different I guess.

With just one batsman firing, the West Indies came so close to the target of 185 imposed by South Africa, one can imagine as to what would have happened had atleast another batsman (if not all) had taken the West Indies' charge. On the other hand, the South African batting was not dominated by a single batsman but there were 6 South African batsmen who crossed double figures. A combined effort by the South African batsmen put up a tough total on the board. Of course, the bowling department was dominated by Wayne Parnell who took 4 wickets giving away 13 runs from his allotted 4 overs.

However, Jaques Kallis, Johan Botha and Albie Morkel returned with a run rate of above 10 an over as compared to the 8.5 by the West Indies team at the end of their batting innings. Last time also, South Africa had won their first encounter against England, following it with a win against New Zealand. This time in the place of New Zealand there are West Indies. Later on, the Proteas, like the last time will have to play India who are also facing England & South Africa like last time. Here too New Zealand being replaced by the West Indies. If the things go as per guess, the semi finals should read India vs Sri Lanka and Pakistan vs West Indies. Let us see.

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