South Africa vs Australia 2020: Openers and Mitchell Starc help Australia thump South Africa in decider

Starc's 3/23 was crucial in Australia bowling out South Africa for 96 and winning by 97 runs
Modified 27 Feb 2020


Australia: 193-5 (20 overs)

David Warner 57(37), Aaron Finch 55(37); Tabraiz Shamsi 1/25

South Africa: 96 all-out (15.3 overs)

Rassie van der Dussen 24(19), Heinrich Klassen 22(18); Mitchell Starc 3/23

South Africa got bowled out for the second time in three games as they were beaten comprehensively by 97 runs and with that, Australia took the three-match T20I series 2-1.

Chasing a mammoth 194 runs to win, South Africa got off to the worst possible start as they lost in-form Quinton de Kock early. Rassie van der Dussen tried to up the ante with a quickfire 24. But wickets kept on falling from the other end. Mitchell Starc, especially, was too hot to handle for the Proteas and in the end they fell short by 97 runs, getting bowled out for 96 in the 16th over.

Also see – IPL 2020 time table

Earlier, South Africa put Australia in to bat with a view to restrict the visitors to a chaseable total. However, the Australian opening pair of David Warner and Aaron Finch got them off to a flyer. The duo hit the South African bowlers to all parts of the ground and added a humongous 120 runs for the first wicket. South Africa tried to claw their way back into the game with some wickets in the middle overs. But Steve Smith played a cameo of 30 in the end to help Australia reach 193-5 in their 20 overs.

Warner, Finch blaze through South Africa

David Warner and Aaron Finch showed why they still are one of the most feared opening pairs in limited-overs cricket. Both took full advantage of the field restrictions and played their natural game. The Proteas bowlers had no answer to the onslaught from the duo as they added 120 runs for the first wicket.

Warner scored 57 off 37 balls which included five fours and two huge sixes. Finch scored 55 off 37 balls which included six fours and one six. Together, they gave Australia a solid platform on which the likes of Steve Smith later built on to reach 193-5 in their 20 overs.

Mitchell Starc stars with ball

South Africa needed a good start in order to have any hopes of chasing 194. But their hopes were severely dented when Mitchell STarc cleaned up their Talisman Quinton de Kock. Starc struck again later when he picked up the wicket of the experienced Faf du Plessis. The wickets of the two most experienced batsmen in the South African ranks hurt their hopes immensely. Starc came back into the attack later and Kagiso Rabada was trapped in front to give him his third wicket.

It was Starc's brilliant bowling and crucial wickets that helped Australia bowl out South Africa for just 96. Thus he was adjudged the player of the match.

Here were his thoughts after the game -

I think it has been a pretty good job from all the bowlers and it is something we want to keep building on. Quinton is a key player and we saw that in the previous game; he's a nice one to get early and get stuck into their middle order. We were all hoping for Agar to get another hat-trick. The spinners have been excellent; we have been doing a good job and there are players waiting in the wings as well. We have a bit of time for the World Cup, a few T20s in New Zealand and we have time to build on it. A 100-run stand for the opening wicket and a few other positives are there for us to build on.

Aaron Finch had a great series with the bat scoring half-centuries in two out of the three T20Is. Thus he was adjudged the player of the series.

Here were his thoughts after the game -

 Wickets in the powerplay is key, it goes a long way if you keep your wickets in hand in winning the game. Yes, it is a very settled side. Huge credit to all the boys, Ashton in my mind was the Man of the Series. And with Adam Zampa, the way they've controlled the middle overs has been amazing. They spin it both ways and challenge both edges and they are a difficult proposition.
Published 27 Feb 2020
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