Relief for South Africa after 1st win at Cricket World Cup

Ruben Hill
June 17, 2019

This comes after South Africa on Saturday night revived their World Cup hopes with a nine-wicket victory over Afghanistan in Cardiff and dismissed the Afghan side after two rain delays cut the match to 48 overs.

"Every time I'm saying to the batsman, control your nerves. Everyone is trying to put a score on the board so we have an opportunity to defend it", said Naib.

"The first three games we didn't play like we did today".

"The boundaries are short straight here so I really practised towards that this week, I wanted to make sure the batsmen had to play me square. He (Tahir) has single-handedly made us a strong team in the last two years with his ability to take wickets in the middle overs".

"Imran as always is special, especially on a wicket like that which is not suited to spin".

"Imran, as always, is special, but I think especially on a wicket like that today where it's not suited for spinners, straight boundaries, to get four wickets like that today was an fantastic bowling performance", he said.

"So hopefully, hopefully this is a real confidence booster for everyone on the team". They are both moving in the right direction with their game'. He's a big player for us and we need him for the next four games.

"So credit goes again to their bowlers and also the conditions, it's bad luck we missed the toss". For all their difficulties in the recent past, though, South Africa were the firm favourites.

The Proteas ran amok once play resumed after the second rain break of the day, with Imran Tahir (4-29) and Andile Phehlukwayo (2-18) causing Afghanistan to tumble from 69-2 to 77-7 before Rashid Khan's entertaining 35 from 25 deliveries lifted his side to 125 all out. So really pleased with the bowlers.

The 24-year-old agreed with his captain that the batsmen need to capitalise on good starts.

'I'm very relieved, ' du Plessis said after the game.

Afghanistan faced a similar fate, losing all three of their matches till now to defending champions Australia, Sri Lanka and New Zealand.

On Friday, June 14, President Ghani attended the Shanghai Cooperation Summit in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan, where he said that breakthroughs in the Afghan peace process will take time without a regional consensus and addressing Taliban's independencies with their supporters.

"We have played four games and they have all been on hard tracks, on green tracks". We are making small mistakes, we have to learn from them. "It was just a case of reminding the guys not to get frustrated with doing the things we need to do and not to feel we need to change our plans or panic". In a tournament with a format, where ten teams are fighting for four positions, one would imagine the importance of net run-rate being considerably high for everyone involved.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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