Proteas hit their straps just in time

Af­ter their con­vinc­ing win against the Windies, the men from SA want to be the first team to win two in a row The Ca­lypso se­ries up­dated

CityPress - - Sport - CHRISTO BUCHNER sports@city­press.co.za Re­cent re­sults Big­gest run scor­ers Stand­ings so far

For the Proteas it is now a ques­tion of on­wards and up­wards. They dare not look back fol­low­ing their con­vinc­ing vic­tory over the West Indies in the tri­an­gu­lar se­ries this week.

And with their new-found self­con­fi­dence and form, they have to break Aus­tralia to­day.

The way in which they brushed the Windies aside has to serve as in­spi­ra­tion for them to once again as­sert their au­thor­ity.

Their vic­tory by 139 runs over the Windies, in which Im­ran Tahir (7/45) posted the best fig­ures yet by a South African bowler, was just the in­jec­tion AB de Vil­liers and his team needed.

The se­ries is wide open af­ter the Proteas’ vic­tory, and all three teams are in the run­ning to make it to the fi­nal.

Af­ter four matches, all three teams have won two and all three have been beaten by the oth­ers.

And with the se­ries now mov­ing to Barbados, there is noth­ing to choose be­tween the teams.

South Africa has to keep up the mo­men­tum they had on Wed­nes­day in St Kitts when they dom­i­nated the home team in all as­pects of the game.

A lack of con­sis­tency is the weak­ness that is tor­ment­ing all three teams, and among the Windies, Aussies and Proteas, none has been able to man­age con­sec­u­tive vic­to­ries in the Tri­an­gu­lar se­ries.

At least the Proteas’ top bat­ting or­der fi­nally flexed its mus­cles with the 343/4 they scored against the Windies.

Tahir men­tioned this big score as pre­cisely one of the main rea­sons for his suc­cess with his seven wick­ets.

The South African spin­ner can now boast the achieve­ment that he was fourth fastest to 100 wick­ets in in­ter­na­tional one-day cricket, and top of the list of all South African bowlers to date.

Tonight all the gears will have to run smoothly again, and the bat­ters and bowlers will have to work to­gether to strengthen their po­si­tion at the top of the log and open the door to the fi­nal.

In Tahir and the chi­na­man bowler Tabraiz Shamsi, the South Africans sud­denly have spin twins who have the abil­ity to keep bat­ters guess­ing.

Chris Mor­ris will also get time on the field again, be­cause he helps with a surge in bat­ting strength in the lower or­der.

It’s a shame that a spot could not be found for Kyle Ab­bott.

On his cur­rent form he should get game time ahead of Kag­iso Rabada, but there are other fac­tors at play pre­vent­ing this.

With Hashim Amla’s bat broad at the mo­ment and Quin­ton de Kock and Faf du Plessis also in good bat­ting form, it’s only AB de Vil­liers who’s yet to con­trib­ute a hefty in­nings.

Wayne Par­nell is bowl­ing with great fire, and a bowl­ing at­tack con­sist­ing of him, Mor­ris, Tahir and Shamsi could cause a lot of prob­lems for the Aussie bats­men.

Tonight all the gears will have to run smoothly again

AB de Vil­liers (SA) 4 Player Im­ran Tahir (SA) Adam Zampa (Aus) Su­nil Narine (WI) Aaron Phangiso (SA) Mitchell Starc (Aus) Josh Ha­zle­wood (Aus) Car­los Brath­waite (WI) Nathan Lyon (Aus) Wayne Par­nell (SA) Date Vandag: June 21: June 24: June 26:

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