- Venue: Senwes Park, Potchefstroom
- Date: 7th March 2020
- Time: 1:30 PM IST
- League: Australia tour of South Africa
South Africa Preview
South Africa has clinched the ODI series with a win in the 2nd ODI at Bloemfontein. The hosts were always the underdogs going up against a mighty Australian side in the two ODIs. However, some special performances in the batting department led the Proteas to victory in back to back matches. Some of the common features of South African innings in both the one-day internationals are – a hundred and an opener being dismissed for a duck.
While it was Janneman Malan who was out for 0 in the 1st ODI, his opening partner Quinton de Kock was out for 0 in the second. Malan bounced back with an unbeaten 129 in the 2nd match, while Heinrich Klaasen continued his form with a fifty at number 5. JJ Smuts replaced Temba Bavuma at number 3 and scored 41 off 64 balls. Smuts and Malan added 91 runs for the 2nd wicket while chasing a 272-runs target.
With Malan finding his form and Klaasen, Miller continuing their good form, South Africa seems to be going strong in the batting department. In addition, Lungi Ngidi and Anrich Nortje are delivering consistently with the ball. While Ngidi picked 9 wickets in the last two games, Nortje follows with 4. Tabraiz Shamsi and Andile Phehlukwayo will also be crucial with their economies and getting breakthroughs in the middle.
Aaron Finch must be disappointed with his side going down in such fashion against the home team. Aussies have their best bowlers and batsmen in the squad for this ODI series while not all of them have delivered. While Kane Richardson and Josh Hazlewood were out of the playing XI for the 2nd ODI, Pat Cummins and Mitchell Starc together bagged 2 wickets defending 271 runs.
All-rounders Mitchell Marsh and Ashton Agar failed with the ball while Marsh added crucial 36 runs at number 6. The visitors managed to pick only 4 wickets in the 2nd ODI while dismissing 7 Proteas batsmen in the 1st ODI. Among those 7 wickets, Pat Cummins and Mitchell Starc had picked 5 while Hazlewood bagged one. Adam Zampa and Cummins will be crucial for Australia going into the final ODI.
In the batting department too, Aussies haven’t delivered anything impressive. While they did improve on their performance form the 1st ODI with two fifties in their innings, Aussies will need a big inning in the 3rd ODI. A couple of half-centuries may win T20is, however, in an ODI game, a hundred is more impactful. Aaron Finch, David Warner, and Steve Smith are the players to watch out for.
South Africa to win the match
While Australia will still be a favorite for many match predictions, the Proteas fire will pose a threat to the visitors’ plans. South Africa’s bowling efforts have been top-notch and coupled with a few good performances with the bat, the hosts will be invincible. Consistent contributions from the middle-order along with the odd big inning from the top-order make for a great success recipe for the hosts.
Fantasy Team Tips
- Quinton de Kock hasn’t played a big inning so far, however, he continues to be the top choice for wicket-keeper among the fantasy teams.
- Talking about popular choices, David Warner, Aaron Finch and Steve Smith also find themselves in 70% of the fantasy teams. However, given the credits required for drafting these players, getting all 3 can be expensive.
- In addition, South Africa’s Heinrich Klaasen and David Miller are in great form and their selection in the fantasy team becomes essential.
- While JJ Smuts justified his replacing Temba Bavuma in the last match, him along with Mitchell Marsh are good options for all-rounders.
- The 3rd and final ODI of the series will have everyone watch Lungi Ngidi, the most successful bowler in the series. While he is a shoe-in for a player of the series award, Pat Cummins can play a similar role for the Aussies.
Fantasy Team Prediction
- Wicket-Keeper – Quinton de Kock
- Batsmen – Aaron Finch, Steve Smith, David Miller, Heinrich Klaasen
- All-rounders – JJ Smuts, Mitchell Marsh
- Bowlers – Lungi Ngidi, Pat Cummins, Anrich Nortje
- Captain – Henrich Klaasen
- Vice-Captain – Steve Smith