‘The conditions reminded us of playing at home.’
South Africa’s skipper Temba Bavuma was pleased with the way his pacers performed in the demolition of Bangladesh in the T20 World Cup Super 12s match, in Abu Dhabi, on Tuesday.
Kagiso Rabada and Anrich Nortje ran through Bangladesh’s batting to fashion a six-wicket victory, which took the Proteas closer to qualification for the semi-finals.
South Africa skittled out a struggling Bangladesh for 84 in 18.2 overs and then knocked off the target in 13.3 overs to consolidate second position in Group 1.
South Africa, with three wins from four matches, have a game against in-form table-toppers England, on November 6, left.
Bangladesh are already out of semi-final contention, having lost all their four matches.
“Quite a lot in the wicket early on, and KG (Rabada) and Nortje were able to exploit it. It excites us. The conditions reminded us of playing at home,” Bavuma said, during the post-match presentation ceremony.
“It’s never easy when you have one guy bowling 150 and another guy in KG who’s got all the skill in the world.
“We wanted to get the score in a good time, but the conditions were a bit tricky. It’s a big game (against England). Looking at the competition the way it is, they have had the better of us recently, and we would like to make amends.”
Bangladesh captain Mahmudullah admitted they were not “good enough”.
“That was a poor batting display, but having said that there was enough assistance in the pitch. It’s frustrating, but we could have won two games. If we had won those games, it would have been a different story.”
Man of the Match Rabada said the pitch assisted him and helped them execute their plans.
“It’s nice to see the ball swing, especially in T20 cricket, but it wasn’t a surprise, having seen that happen in the IPL games here. There’s a bit of bounce here, but it’s a bit two-paced; some balls skid through, but it’s probably the quickest wicket here,” he said.
Spinner Keshav Maharaj and Rabada were terrific with their line and length when they opened the attack. They did not let either Liton Das (24) or Mohammad Naim free their arms.
When Naim (9) tried to break the shackles, the left-hander ended up giving a simple catch to Reeza Hendricks at mid-wicket, off Rabada.
The young pacer trapped Soumya Sarkar (0) off the next ball which brought Mushfiqur Rahim to the crease.
Rahim survived the hat-trick ball but went back without scoring after facing three balls, when he could not handle the bounce that Rabada got off the surface, and edged one to Hendricks at gully.
Nortje also kept the Bangladesh batters on a tight leash, which meant that the South Africans completely dominated the powerplay overs, conceding only two boundaries in 28 runs.
Nortje, too, got the ball to jump off the track and skipper Mahmudullah (3), who could not handle the bounce, edged it straight to Aiden Markram at point.
Dwaine Pretorious joined the party when he castled Afif Hossain (0) to leave Bangladesh tottering at 34 for five. From there the slide just continued for Bangladesh.
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