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Australia start World Cup campaign with nervy win
Australia posted a nervy five-wicket win over South Africa with two balls to spare in the Super 12s opener, a Group 1 game, in the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup at the Zayed Cricket Stadium in Abu Dhabi on Saturday.
Chasing 119 for a win, Australia were in early trouble before Steve Smith (35) and Glenn Maxwell (18) rescued them a 42-run stand. But it required an unbroken 40-run partnership between Marcus Stoinis (25) and Matthew Wade (15) to see them home.
Put in to bat, South Africa plunged headlong into trouble. Aiden Markram (40) stood tall among the ruins and helped the Proteas with two partnerships. A total of 118 was grossly inadequate, and 20 more runs would have made a difference.
Australia beat South African by five wickets. Finish at 121/5 in 19.4 overs
Last over. 8 needed off 6 balls. 111/5. Australia should win it.
Maxwell follows Steve Smith and Australia are courting trouble. Two new batsmen at the crease is a recipe for disaster. Game back in an even keel. Tabraiz Shamsi gets his first wicket. 81/5 in 15.2 overs
Steve Smith and Glenn Maxwell batting sensibly. Both have eschewed risks and have been getting the occasional boundary against South Africa’s double left-arm spin attack. 76/3 in 14.1 over. That means 43 required off 35 balls.
Slow going for Australia against South Africa. But the required run rate doesn’t require any needless aggression. 64 needed off 54 balls. They shouldn’t lose wickets and allow the run rate to climb.
Australia are wobbling against South Africa. Three down for 38 in 7.5 overs is a worry despite their depth in batting. Mitchell Marsh gone, but there’s Maxwell, Wade and Stoinis to come. And the required run rate is not daunting. But a couple of wickets here and this could be anybody’s game.
David Warner’s woes continue, and Australia are in a spot of bother. South Africa are back in the game, having grabbed two wickets in powerplay. A rasping square cut off Rabada gave Warner hopes of regaining form, only to be dismissed two balls later. 20/2 in 4.5 overs
South Africa have struck back. They needed an early wicket and they got it. Australian skipper Aaron Finch sliced a Nortje delivery for a catch to third man. The Proteas will sense a chance here. 4/1 in 2 overs. A jittery start for Australia
Australia bowled tight lines after they put South Africa in to bat in the T20 World Cup Super 12s game in Abu Dhabi. The Proteas never got going as they lost wickets regularly. Only Aidan Markram (40 in 36 deliveries) stood among the ruins and strung together two partnerships with Klaasen and Miller. The target of 119 is a well within Australia’s grasp, unless South African bowlers turn the match around.
South Africa lose their ninth wicket. Anrich Nortje falls in the final over. Australia have kept the South African scoring in check. The Proteas finish at 118/9 in 20 overs. Superb bowling performance from the Aussies. Now they have to show their quality with the bat. Low targets can be tricky affairs. And South African have a good attack.
Aidan Markram’s brave knock comes to an end. Finds midwicket with a flick off Australia’s Mitchell Starc. Markram kept South Africa in the fight with two partnerships. Just the bowlers to bat now. 98/8 in 17.1 overs
The first six of the Super 12s. And it took 16.1 overs. Aidan Markram launches Hazlewood over midwicket with a fierce pull. South Africa will need more such shots to post a decent score. 94/7 in 16.3 overs
South Africa are in a tailspin. A run out adds to their embarrassment. Maharaj is gone and the Proteas are 83/7 in 14.4 overs. Another five overs left, but not much wickets left for South Africa. And that will tell on the total.
South Africa are tottering after a double strike from Adam Zampa. 82/6 in 14 overs, they won’t have the firepower when they reach the slog overs. An underwhelming display from the South African batsmen.
South Africa woes
David Miller swings at Adam Zampa and misses. Even DRS couldn’t save him. 85/5 in 13.3 overs. South Africa struggling to cope with the Australian attack. Regular fall of wickets hasn’t helped. Australia in total control here at the Zayed Cricket Stadium in Abu Dhabi.
Here is the latest from Mr Cricket UAE Anis Sajan
11 overs down and South Africa are 63/4. The scoring has understandably slowed down. They need to have wickets in hand before the final surge in the slog overs. Australia have staunched the run flow with a double-spin attack
South Africa are coming apart. Fourth wicket gone. Klaasen edges Cummins to backward point. A classy extra-cover drive was all he had to show. 48/4 in 8.3 overs, the Proteas are in dire straits. They need a partnership, or they could end up with a below-par score.
Australia captain Finch has sensed an opening. With three wickets down, he’s brought on leggie Adam Zampa to buy wickets. South Africa cannot afford to attack him, but then they have to grab as many runs in the powerplay. Dilemma here. 35/3 in 6.4 overs
More worries for South Africa. Quinton de Kock plays on to his stumps. A bit unlucky as the ball bounced off his hips and on to the stumps. Second wicket for Hazlewood, who had a superb IPL, too. With three wickets down, the Proteas need to rebuild and that will affect the scoring. The brakes are on, in the form of wickets for Australia. 23/3 in 4.4 overs
South Africa in a spot of trouble. Second wicket down. Rassie van der Dussen, the man in form, is gone. Nicked Josh Hazlewood to the keeper. Two wickets in the powerplay will impact the South Africa scoring. There’s still three more overs of powerplay left. 17/2 in 3 overs
First blood for Australia. Glenn Maxwell strikes. Quicker delivery and Bavuma got himself into a tangle. A blow for South Africa in the powerplay. 15/1 in 1.5 overs
Australia started with Mitchell Starc. South African skipper Temba Bavuma showed no nerves as he unleashed a spanking off-drive followed by a square drive. Good start here for the Proteas. Quinton de Kock is the other batsman. 11 runs off the over.
South Africa captain Temba Bavuma too has chosen a three-man pace attack. Dwayne Pretorius’ medium pace will be the fifth bowling option. He will complement pacers Kagiso Rabada and Anrich Nortje. Tabraiz Shamsi and Keshav Maharaj will take care of the spinning duties
Here are the teams for the opener
AUSTRALIA: Aaron Finch, David Warner, Mitchell Marsh, Glenn Maxwell, Steve Smith, Marcus Stoinis, Matthew Wade, Pat Cummins, Mitchell Starc, Adam Zampa, Josh HazlewoodS
SOUTH AFRICA: Temba Bavuma, Quinton de Kock, Aiden Markram, Rassie van der Dussen, David Miller, Heinrich Klaasen, Dwaine Pretorius, Kagiso Rabada, Keshav Maharaj, Anrich Nortje, Tabraiz Shamsi.
Ashton Agar is a prominent omission in the Aussie XI. Finch has opted for a three-man pace attack. Zampa and Maxwell will provide the spin.
Welcome to the opening match of the Super 12s in the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup. South Africa take on Australia at the Zayed Cricket Stadium in Abu Dhabi in the 13th match of the tournament Australia won the toss and put South Africa into bat. We are 15 minutes out from the starts of the Super 12s.