Match 15 of the ICC Cricket World Cup sees South Africa clash with the West Indies at the Rose Bowl, Southampton on Friday and after losing their first three matches the Proteas now have little or no margin for error.
The Proteas went in to Wednesday’s match against India in Southampton as a team under pressure and it showed as they slipped to another defeat, going down by 6 wickets. Batting first South Africa found early trouble and they limped to 89/5. Runs down the order from Phehlukwayo (34), Morris (42) and Rabada (31) saw the innings close on 227/9.
The South African bowlers battled gamely with Rabada (2/39) the pick of the attack but Rohit Sharma’s ton was the mainstay of a successful Indian chase completed in 47.3 overs.
After losing to England (104 runs) and Bangladesh (21 runs) plus the defeat to India another loss here would surely be a terminal blow to the lingering hopes of a place in the semi finals. In the outright tournament betting South Africa are now trading at around 40/1 to be crowned champions and 8/1 to reach the semi finals.
Rassie van der Dussen has scored a total of 113 runs in South Africa’s three matches so far, Faf du Plessis has made 105 and Quinton de Kock 101.
Andile Phehlukwayo , Kagiso Rabada and Imran Tahir have all taken 4 wickets in the tournament, and Lungi Ngidi have 3 and Chris Morris have 3.
This is how South Africa lined up against India last time out.
Quinton de Kock (wk), Hashim Amla, Faf du Plessis (capt), Rassie van der Dussen, David Miller, Jean-Paul Duminy, Andile Phehlukwayo, Chris Morris, Kagiso Rabada, Imran Tahir, Tabraiz Shamsi
Having started their campaign with a more than comfortable 7 wicket win over Pakistan at Nottingham, West Indies stayed at the same venue for Thursday’s clash with Australia where they were beaten by 14 runs. The Windies will feel they missed a great opportunity given they had Australia in deep trouble at 79/5 only to find themselves having to chase 289 for victory after Australia fought back.
Although openers Lewis and Gayle were dismissed in the first 5 overs of the chase a WIndies win was still a realistic proposition until deep in the match. Shai Hope top scored with 68, Pooran made 40 and Jason Holder 51 but after losing 2 key wickets in the 46th over there was to be no way back.
Shai Hope is leading run scorer for West Indies with 79, Nicholas Pooran has 74 and Chris Gayle 71.
Oshane Thomas is leading wicket taker for West Indies with 6, Andre Russell and Jason Holder both have 4 wickets and Cottrell and Brathwaite have 3.
In the outright tournament betting West Indies are now trading at around 10/1 to be crowned champions and 12/10 to reach the semi finals.
This is how West Indies lined up against Australia last time out.
Chris Gayle, Evin Lewwis, Shai Hope(wk), Nicholas Pooran, Shimron Hetmyer, Andre Russell, Jason Holder (capt), Carlos Brathwaite, Ashley Nurse, Sheldon Cottrell, Oshane Thomas
Head to Head
The teams have met 61 times with South Africa winning 44, West Indies have won 14 with 1 tie and 1 no result,
The teams haven’t crossed swords since June 2016 when West Indies won a home series 2-1.
The Betting, Click here for all markets
South Africa even money
West Indies 17/20
Note prices quoted are correct at the time of publication but are subject to change.
The Proteas are pretty much in the last chance saloon and the top and middle order batting has been a big let down so far. If there is a plus from the latest defeat it comes in the performances of Phehlukwayo, Morris and Rabada who all made runs where others failed and then battled gamely in trying (in vain) to defend a low total. Rabada looks a big runner to be top SA bowler here.
As for West Indies, their game has come on leaps and bounds, they will really fancy this but letting Australia off the hook last time out suggests they are not quite the finished article – yet.
The match result looks a tricky call but it should take a biggish score to win it and whoever bats first gets the vote to post a target of 296 or more.
1st Innings Score , over 295.5 runs at 9/10
Top SA Bowler, Rabada.