SA's women’s cricket team wary of expected spin threat at the Twenty20 World Cup

24 October 2018 - 13:45 By Mahlatse Mphahlele
Lizelle Lee and Dane van Niekerk of South Africa during the 2018 Women T20 match between South Africa and India at SuperSport Park, Pretoria on 21 February 2018.
Lizelle Lee and Dane van Niekerk of South Africa during the 2018 Women T20 match between South Africa and India at SuperSport Park, Pretoria on 21 February 2018.
Image: Samuel Shivambu/BackpagePix

Despite playing a limited overs series in the Caribbean a few weeks ago‚ the South African Women’s cricket team remains wary of the spin threat that is expected at the Twenty20 World Cup later this month.

The Proteas played five T20s and three ODIs against the West Indies recently but captain Dane van Niekerk does not agree with the general perception that they will have some sort of advantage during the tournament.

“We are not going to take anyone lightly because the conditions there suit sub-continent teams a little bit more‚” she said.

The South Africans are in Group A with hosts West Indies and sub-continent teams Bangladesh and Sri Lanka.

Bangladesh and Sri Lanka usually do well on flat and turning pitches that are known to provide assistance to the spinners.

“If you look at our group‚ we have two teams from the sub-continent and the conditions in the West Indies suit the sub-continent teams a little bit more‚" Van Niekerk said.

"Bangladesh and Sri Lanka have talented spinners in their teams but we must concentrate on our preparations and how we execute properly on match days.”

Coach Hilton Moreeng said given the expected slow pitches and the threat of the spinners from Sri Lanka‚ Bangladesh and West Indies‚ who will be comfortable on home conditions‚ the powerplay is going to be vital.

“It is obvious that powerplay is going to be key because we have two sub-continent teams in our group and they will have about three to five spinners‚" Moreeng said.

"We need to capitalise on the hard ball upfront and as a batting unit we must work on the consistency with at least one of the top batters batting as deep as they can for us to have a chance.”

Van Niekerk added that the bowling team would have a better chance of winning the tournament.

“I believe that the best bowling team in the Caribbean will win the World Cup‚" she said.

"In general at the moment in women’s cricket‚ it is difficult to defend with the four fielders out and the smaller boundaries.

"That is the main thing we are going to focus on as the bowling because we have fell short at the last World Cup in England.”

“We have said it more than a hundred times that we can beat anyone‚ it just depends on what we do on the day.

"Over the recent past‚ we have not been consistent and that has been our downfall but somewhere it has to click.

"Hopefully‚ it will on a stage like the World Cup.”


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