Cricket Twenty20 International 28 March 2023
South Africa vs West Indies - Match Preview
Who would want to be a bowler? Certainly not any of the players from the second South Africa and West Indies T20I in Centurion that saw a T20 world record 517 runs scored across 38.5 overs. The teams now move across the country to Johannesburg for the final T20I of this series at the Wanderers, and after this match, many players from both sides will be off to India for the IPL.
New South Africa T20I captain Aiden Markram would be extremely happy with his team's performance to chase down a massive 259 in just 18.5 overs, a run rate of almost 14 in their innings. Fast run-scoring has been a theme in this series with every single of the four innings to date scoring at more than 11 per over. It certainly was not a happy time for the bowlers, though, with Kagiso Rabada (0/39) the most economical South African bowler while Marco Jansen was the most effective with 3/52. Sisanda Magala will be one looking to forget this match after being taken down by Johnson Charles in particular and finishing with 0/67 from his four overs following his Player of the Match award in the opening game.
259 was always going to be a difficult chase for the South Africans, but with them having so much recent quality T20 experience off the back of the inaugural SA20 league, they had never been better positioned for this chase. A fast start was needed and that was exactly what came with Quinton de Kock (100) and Reeza Hendricks (68) putting on a massive 102 in the six-over powerplay, a T20I world record. Every batter kept going hard in getting SA to 200 from just 84 balls, allowing a small slowing in pace towards the end before bringing up the win. We could see another high-scoring match to finish the series with the average score at the Wanderers being 178, which notably is also a ground that sees spearhead Rabada go at more than nine runs per over.
The West Indies had the luxury of batting first on what was a perfect T20 wicket at Centurion and they did make the most of it early. Scoring 258 in a T20 should see a team win most games but apparently not this one - not even after a Johnson Charles masterpiece. Charles seems to produce one world-beating knock every couple of years and this second T20I was one of those. He smashed 11 sixes and ten boundaries on his way to a magnificent 118 from just 46 balls. All kinds of records looked set to be broken before he was out with four overs to go. Some solid hitting toward the end of the innings by Romario Shepherd (41) saw the West Indies get to 258, but it remarkably wasn’t quite enough.
The biggest issue for the West Indies seemed to be a lack of quality bowling. It really was the best bowlers in this match that managed to keep it anything like economical. Romario Shepherd and Jason Holder, known quality bowlers, kept their figures below South Africa’s required rate while Cottrell only bowled one over after going for 29. Having not bowled in the first T20I, Raymon Reifer did well to bowl his four overs for 42 while taking the key wicket of de Kock. With this being just his second T20I match, he’s certainly one to keep an eye on as the West Indies build towards a home T20 World Cup. Much like South Africa, it’s the bowlers who need to improve ahead of the deciding match, especially if the West Indies want to avoid a fifth T20 series loss in a row.
📋 Key battle: Having both played for Lucknow at the IPL the matchup of Jason Holder and Quinton de Kock is a key one in this series with both players being amongst their respective teams' best. In all T20 cricket, de Kock has historically dominated with 55 runs from just 33 balls (exactly 10rpo) without being dismissed once. Whoever comes out on top in this duel will have a great shot at lifting the trophy.
⚡ Stat attack: South Africa has won just four of their last ten matches at the Wanderers in this format.
- The average first innings score when batting first and winning in Johannesburg T20Is is 193.
- Three of the five highest first innings scores at the Wanderers were successfully chased.
- Tabraiz Shamsi has taken 16 wickets across his last 10 T20I matches compared to just nine from the ten before.
- The century by Johnson Charles was his first T20I score above 50 since August of 2016.
- David Miller scores at 9.97 runs per over at the Wanderers, compared with 8.64rpo in his overall career.
- Kyle Mayers scores at 7.44rpo against left-arm pace compared with 9.34 against right-arm pace in T20 cricket.
- Wayne Parnell has taken 2+ wickets in four of his five T20Is against the West Indies.
- Teams to win the toss have gone on to lose 58% of matches at this venue.
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