Currently ranked 3rd on the ICC ODI rankings, South Africa arrive in good shape, having the third highest win-ratio since the heartbreak of the 2015 World Cup. They have a seam-dominant attack led by Kagiso Rabada, Dale Steyn, Lungi Ngidi, and veteran Imran Tahir offering spin support. Most of the team has played County cricket and should be familiar with English conditions.
The batting raises more question marks but they will be hoping their new middle order batman Rassie van der Dussen who currently average 88 runs in ODI cricket will fill in the boots left by AB de Villers. Despite carrying the tag of favorites in several World Cups they have never contested a tournament final, and have been knocked out of four semi-finals against England in 1992, Australia in 1999, Australia again in 2007 and New Zealand in 2015.
This time around, few are expecting the Proteas to go all the way but this may bring less pressure on the team and hopefully drop the ” chokers” tag.
Recent Form: WWWWW
Last Completed ODI series: (Won 5-0) vs Sri Lanka
Best World Cup Finish: Semi-finalists (1992, 1999, 2007, 2015)
Predicted Finish: 4th
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Batsman to Watch: Hashim Amla[player_details id=”15799″ align=”none”]
Amla is the fastest player to 2000, 3000, 4000, 5000, 6000 and 7000 runs in ODI cricket but his recent form almost cost him a place in the squad. He did show some form in the warm-up matches, he averages 57 in England and he will be key at the top of the innings for South Africa.
Bowler to Watch: Kagiso Rabada[player_details id=”15666″ align=”none”]
One of the most feared bowlers in ODI cricket, Rabada bowls with pace, generates good bounce and has the ability to work both with the new ball and the old ball. Rabada is coming off a successful IPL where he left midway due to back stiffness where he took 25 wickets, 1 wicket behind the top-wicket taker Imran Tahir.
South Africa will begin their campaign against the hosts England at the Kia Oval on the 30 of May.