Cricket World Cup: South Africa vs Bangladesh
Venue: The Oval, London
Date: Sunday, 2 June 2019
South Africa will be looking to bounce back from their opening day defeat to England as they take on Bangladesh at the Oval. South Africa enjoyed the dream start against the hosts, dismissing Jonny Bairstow in the second over but England’s batting depth shone through with Roy, Root, Stokes and Morgan all scoring half-centuries as they made 311-8. Quinton de Kock looked in good nick in reply but the Proteas did not ultimately reach the target and came up 104 runs short.
That result means their next game against a dangerous Bangladesh side becomes a must win for Faf du Plessis’s men.
Despite the defeat, South Africa did trouble the host nation with Imran Tahir, Lungi Ngidi and Kagiso Rabada all bowling impressive spells and picking up key wickets. Question marks will hover over Hashim Amla after he picked up a nasty blow to the head and they could look to rotate the batting line-up with David Miller likely to be pushing for a starting berth, whilst Dale Steyn could add some experience to proceedings too – provided he passes a late fitness test.
Bangladesh come into the World Cup full of confidence and have climbed to number 7 in the ICC ODI rankings over the past 12 months. Their batting line up is as strong as any in the tournament with the likes of Tamim Iqbal, Liton Das and wicket-keeper batman Mushfiqur Rahim providing real fire-power at the top of the order. Whilst their seam bowling attack may lack potency in English conditions they have top line spin options in the form of Shakib al Hasan.
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With the likes of Tamim Iqbal and Liton Das opening for Bangladesh, their firecracker approach may not pay off on the bouncy Oval pitch. With Hashim Amla likely to be rested and Quinton de Kock in good form, the Proteas could pile on some early runs before the Bangladesh spinners get to work.
Despite not getting much in the way of assistance against England from his team mates, Quinton de Kock played a balanced innings and was one of the only Proteas batsmen to get to grips with the Oval pitch. He looks in good form and could go big here.
Faf du Plessis’s decision to open the bowling with Imran Tahir instantly paid off against England and the veteran spinner rolled back the years to take 2-61 from his 10 overs. Whilst the Oval pitch won’t turn square with the white ball, he will use all his experience and knowhow and will trouble the Bangladesh batsmen.
Bangladesh have a packed batting line-up and they will be eager to go after the South African bowling from the outset. Liton Das made an impressive 73 against India in the final World Cup warm-up game and he looks to have the game and the temperament to compete at the highest level.
Few all-rounders in the world perform as consistently as Shakib Al Hasan and once again he shoulders the hopes of a nation in a major tournament. Whilst his runs are sure to be vital, his bowling is his trump suit and he will be looking to restrict the South African batsmen and take some key scalps.
South Africa certainly weren’t at their best against England and don’t look to have their best XI secured and they will see this game as a must win in the context of the World Cup. Bangladesh have plenty of players that could cause the Proteas problems but South Africa should come through this one at 0.28 with BetXchange.
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