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South Africa look to land knockout blow

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Last Updated on 7 years by Charbel Coorey

It wasn’t fair. It just wasn’t fair. Quinton De Kock and Hashim Amla barely raised a sweat, mowing down Bangladesh’s 278/7 with over 7 overs to go, in Kimberley on Sunday.

South Africa look a well oiled machine, but given how disappointing Bangladesh have been, are we getting too far ahead of ourselves thinking South Africa won’t lose a series in their season, their longest one yet?

For the moment, they are well on track to take a 2-0 lead in Paarl, simply because their opponents don’t have the know-how or quality to ask proper questions. De Kock and Amla made the Bangladeshi bowlers look park quality, following on from the thrashing South Africa gave Bangladesh in the Tests.

This is almost the same Bangladesh attack that made South Africa look ordinary in Bangladesh in 2015. The difference is incredible.

So where to for Bangladesh?  It’s got to the point where just being competitive will count for something. As a Bangladesh fan, if they manage to take a wicket, it will be met with a cheer as loud as the cheers in Dhaka and Chittagong.

Dating back to the Champions Trophy semi-final hammering by India, Bangladesh have taken just 1 wicket in their last 83 overs, and look absolutely toothless in foreign conditions. Significant blame should be placed on the management and coaches for this, but that’s a conversation for another day.

Can a team bounce back just a few days after being destroyed so badly that even Faf Du Plessis felt sorry?

Key to a South Africa win

Do the Proteas even need to do anything different?
Their biggest concern at the moment is whether their middle order batsmen will even get a chance to bat in this series.
Complacency is their only threat, and with Faf Du Plessis at the helm, there will be none of that. The key for South Africa is to continue to remain ruthless and show no mercy.

Key to a Bangladesh win

Miracle as victory may seem in the 2nd ODI, Bangladesh still possess some great talent. 
Mushfiqur Rahim’s century was brilliant, and Shakib Al Hasan became the fastest ever to achieve the double of 5,000 runs and 200 wickets in ODIs.
Taskin Ahmed, who has fallen away badly in recent months, needs some confidence instilled in him real quick. Mashrafe is able to nibble the ball around, and Rubel has had his moments in ODI cricket. However, this has mainly been at home.
Is Bangladesh’s best chance to bowl first and try get some morning movement? Their bowlers seem to be lacking the skill to get anything out of the surfaces away from home. They need this to be their day, with the series on the line.

Possible line ups:

South Africa look strong and settled. They boast a quality batting lineup, and will be looking to go 2-0 up in Paarl. The lowest batting average in the top six is a very respectable 37.71 (Duminy).
Wayne Parnell has even been ruled out of the T20Is, so it looks likely the Proteas will go with the same team.
South Africa possible XI: 1. Quinton De Kock, 2. Hashim Amla, 3. Faf Du Plessis, 4. AB De Villiers, 5. David Miller, 6. JP Duminy, 7. Dwaine Pretorius, 8. Dane Peterson, 9. Andile Phehlukwayo, 10. Kagiso Rabada, 11. Imran Tahir
You can try be as positive as you like about Bangladesh, but it is likely they will be without Mushfiqur Rahim, Tamim Iqbal and Mustafizur Rahman for this game. They are running thin on resources and confidence.
Imrul Kayes, despite scoring 31, looked out of his depth. Soumya Sarkar has a solid ODI record for Bangladesh and should play instead. With Mushfiqur in doubt, Mominul should play, too.
Bangladesh possible XI: 1. Liton Das, 2. Soumya Sarkar, 3. Mominul Haque, 4. Shakib Al Hasan, 5. Mahmudullah, 6. Sabbir Rahman, 7. Nasir Hossain, 8. Mohammad Saifuddin, 9. Mashrafe Mortaza, 10. Taskin Ahmed, 11. Rubel Hossain

Stats & Facts:

  • If South Africa win this game, they will leapfrog India to top spot in the ODI rankings.
  • 282/0 is the highest successful run chase in ODI history without losing a wicket, overtaking Jason Roy and Alex Hales for England in 2016 v Sri Lanka
  • Quinton De Kock and Hashim Amla became South Africa’s most prolific ODI opening pair, overtaking Graeme Smith and Herschelle Gibbs.
  • Hashim Amla became the fastest ever to reach 26 ODI centuries (154 innings), beating Virat Kohli who reached the mark in 166 innings.
  • In their last 83 overs of ODI cricket, Bangladesh have taken 1 wicket. Since the start of their New Zealand tour last December, Bangladesh away from the subcontinent have taken 55 wickets at a high average of  44.74. Excluding New Zealand and Ireland, Bangladesh away from the subcontinent in this period have taken 4 wickets in 5 matches at an average of 234.5 runs per wicket.
  • South Africa’s batsmen across 2 Tests and 1 ODI have plundered 1,598 runs at an average of 122.92 runs per wicket.
  • Shakib Al Hasan became the fifth player to achieve the 5,000 runs-200 wickets double in ODIs. He is the quickest to achieve this, doing so in 178 matches.
  • Mushfiqur Rahim’s unbeaten 110 was the first time a Bangladesh player scored a century against South Africa in any format. 
It is difficult to see anything other than a South Africa victory in Paarl. With Tamim, Mushfiqur and Mustafizur all likely to be missing, anything other than a comfortable South Africa win will be a surprise.

Charbel Coorey
Charbel Cooreyhttps://cricblog.net
Charbel is the owner & founder of cricblog.net, based in Sydney, Australia. He started the website to fulfill his love for the game of cricket. Charbel has also been featured on other publications including OP India, Times of India, and The Roar, among others. For any story tips or questions, you can contact Charbel at charbelcoorey@cricblog.net.

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