World Cup 2019: South Africa in complete disarray
With their third straight loss at the 2019 World Cup, South Africa seems to be in total disarray. More importantly, the manner in which South Africa lost all the games and the latest revelations surrounding De Villiers, who had expressed his wish to make a come back, would certainly not make things better.
The loss against Bangladesh would have hurt South Africa the most since England and India are considered the top two teams. Add to all these, injury concerns to Dale Steyn and Lungi Ngidi has given plenty of headaches to the team management.
Technically, it is said that six wins off nine games would be enough to qualify for the semifinals considering the Round Robin format - even five wins with a superior run rate could help teams scrape through. South Africa definitely has the potential to win the remaining games but the team does not look even half as good as their previous World Cup teams were.
With the top order not firing, they have failed to chase or amass big totals batting first. Hashim Amla looks out of sorts while De Kock has been unlucky at times. The Captain Faf Du Plessis has been in good form - so has been Van Der Dussen and Andile Phehlukwayo. But none of these has carried on to make a big score which should be a cause of worry. JP Duminy and David Miller are yet to bat to potential.
As pitches in England are more inclined towards batsmen, thirties and forties from frontline batsmen would not suffice for teams to get to defendable totals. With Kagiso Rabada getting little support, the bowling looks weak. While Imram Tahir remains a fighter, it remains to be seen whether he can be an ‘impact player’ or not.
Inspiration can be sought from Lance Klusener’s heroics in the 1999 world cup. Pakistan were in similar circumstances in the 1992 World Cup before staging a dramatic comeback to win the trophy.
Taking into consideration the unpredictable weather and chances of matches being interrupted or abandoned, it is always risky to be in a situation where you are at the mercy of others. Above all, the chokers tag has always accompanied South Africa in global tournaments.
If Hashim Amla, De Kock and Du Plessis bat well together and the bowling attack finds rhythm, with meaningful contributions from the middle and lower order, South Africa could go the distance, but the situation looks bleak at present. A victory is all that is needed to turn things around though.