South Africa vs Zimbabwe, 2nd ODI: Preview and Predicted Playing XI
South Africa showed their quality in the first ODI at the Diamond Oval in Kimberly and their bowlers did not even break a sweat as they clearly exposed the chinks in Zimbabwe's batting department. Now, these two teams will head to Bloemfontein, where Proteas will aim to attain unaccessible lead, when they face Zimbabwe in the second fixture of the three-match ODI series at Mangaung Oval in Bloemfontein on Wednesday, October 3.
Both teams have faced each other twice at this ground in the past with South Africa having emerged victorious on both the occasions. In their most recent clash here in 2010, the Proteas secured a convincing 64-run victory. Batting first, the hosts accumulated a massive 351/6 in their 50 overs before restricting the tourists to 287/6.
The Proteas hammered Zimbabwe by five wickets in the first game and are on the verge of a series win. Despite playing without their frontline batsmen, they are still looking a better team against Zimbabweans and they will be coming into this match as the more confident side after being 1-0 up in the series.
Batting: Heinrich Klaasen and Aiden Markram were in good touch in the opening fixture. Both played sensibly in the low scoring encounter to lead the team with respective contributions of 44 and 27 runs. The team will be hoping for another strong display from them.
Their most experienced campaigner JP Duminy continues to be the key man for South Africa. The stand-in skipper has a couple of half-centuries from five ODIs at this ground and his knock will become even more important should the hosts lose early wickets again.
Bowling: Kagiso Rabada and Lungi Ngidi conquered the Zimbabwean top order and shared five wickets between them. These two will once again be backed by their skipper to run through the Zimbabwean batting.
Imran Tahir was impressive as well with 2-23. The leg-spinner is South Africa's leading ODI wicket-taker from the current squad after Dale Steyn and he can cause problems for the visitors again in the middle overs.
Expected Playing XI : Jean-Paul Duminy (C), Willem Mulder, Andile Phehlukwayo, Kagiso Rabada, Imran Tahir, Lungi Ngidi, Dean Elgar, Aiden Markram, Reeza Hendricks, Heinrich Klaasen and Christiaan Jonker.
Zimbabwe were completely dominated in the previous game and they now find themselves under considerable pressure as they need to win this match at all costs if they are to keep the series alive. They had a very disappointing day with the bat last time and will have to come up with a much better performance if they are to have any chance of beating the hosts.
Batting: After a shoddy performance in first ODI, they will need strong contributions from their top order, if they are to put any kind of pressure on the South African bowlers in this must-win game. Hamilton Masakadza was their only top-order batsman to reach double figures and the skipper will be expected to lead from the front here.
Brendan Taylor is Zimbabwe's third-highest run-getter in ODIs and him along with Sean Williams and Elton Chigumbura will be the team's biggest hopes in the middle order.
Bowling: Tendai Chatara was the pick of the lot, conceding just 12 runs for two wickets off his six overs and Zimbabwe will want the pacer to keep up the good work. His partner Wellington Masakadza too finished with impressive figures of 2-26 against the Africans and they will be backed by his team to put Proteas under pressure by taking wickets at regular intervals.
Expected Playing XI: Hamilton Masakadza (C), Craig Ervine, Brendan Taylor, Sean Williams, Peter Moor, Elton Chigumbura, Wellington Masakadza, Brandon Mavuta, Kyle Jarvis, Solomon Mire and Tendai Chatara.