The last day of the group stages features two key matches out of the three on offer. The first match of the day at 10 am (8:00am GMT) is the decider between Australia and Sri-Lanka, the winner will join Pakistan in the semi-finals. It is hard to call a winner in this game, as Australia are without a doubt the best side in the world in the longer versions of the game, however they have struggled to adjust to the shortest version, twenty20.
There is no doubt they have the players that can impact on this game, however they haven’t seemed to adjust to this format quickly enough. I think Sri-Lanka will win it in a tightly contested game. The key man for Australia will be Symonds, a brutal innings from him could change the game.
Pakistan vs Bangladesh: There is nothing to lose for Bangladesh who started off by thrashing the West Indians, and struggling from there. They have some classy players, but are no match for the powerful Pakistanis.
South Africa vs India: The final match could cause some calculator work to be used if India beat SA. South Africa will qualify as the number one side even if they lose to India provided it is nail bitingly close. However if South Africa get trounced by India, they could find the net run rate counting against them and fail to qualify. It is an unlikely situation, especially as India just need a win to qualify regardless of by how much it is.
I have worked out that if India score 210 and SA fail to make 195 they will be knocked out. At the moment they have the best NRR however the matches are so close it is easy for them to relinquish this position.
I predict South Africa to win this game but it will be their toughest game of the tournament so far as there is added pressure on them. The conditions will be very interesting and more than likely favouring the side batting first. This toss is a vital one to win.
Pakistan and New Zealand are through to the semi-finals, England and Bangladesh are out, Australia have to beat Sri-Lanka to qualify.
Today SA face NZ, tomorrow they take on India. India have to beat England today in order to give themselves a chance of qualifying. The winner of this group will face Australia or Sri-Lanka, depending on the outcome of tomorrows game. Pakistan face bangladesh and surely must win tomorrow?
Pakistan and South Africa have looked like the danger sides thus far in the tournament and If SA win their last two game these sides will contest the final if they win the semi’s, which will be deserved and an absolute cracker!!!!
Today brings the last day of pool games. There is a lot of interest in how Bangladesh will fare against South Africa whilst Sri Lanka, rated by many as a side to win this competition face the unpredictable New Zealand!!! Both games should be highly entertaining and should provide an indication how the sides will fare in the Super 8 format.
The fixtures are shown below, for the remainder of the tournament
12 New Zealand v Kenya Kingsmead 10:00
12 Pakistan v Scotland Kingsmead 14:00
12 Australia v Zimbabwe Newlands 18:00
13 West Indies v Bangladesh Wanderers Stadium 10:00
13 Zimbabwe v England Newlands 14:00
13 India v Scotland Kingsmead 18:00
14 Sri Lanka v Kenya Wanderers Stadium 10:00
14 Australia v England Newlands 14:00
14 India v Pakistan Kingsmead 18:00
15 Sri Lanka v New Zealand Wanderers Stadium 14:00
15 South Africa v Bangladesh Newlands 18:00
16 C1 v D2 Wanderers Stadium 10:00
16 B1 v A2 Newlands 14:00
16 A1 v B2 Newlands 18:00
17 D1 v C2 Wanderers Stadium 18:00
18 C1 v B2 Kingsmead 10:00
18 B1 v D1 Wanderers Stadium 14:00
18 A2 v C2 Wanderers Stadium 18:00
19 A1 v C1 Kingsmead 14:00
19 B2 v D2 Kingsmead 18:00
20 B1 v C2 Newlands 10:00
20 A2 v D1 Newlands 14:00
20 A1 v D2 Kingsmead 18:00
22 E2 v F1 Newlands (SF 1) 13:00
22 E1 v F2 Kingsmead (SF 2) 18:00
24 Final v Final Wanderers Stadium (Final) 14:00
On Saturday the South African squad was announced for the upcoming Twenty20 Cup. There was the shock omission of Jaques Kallis, which can easily be justified if Strydom is sticking to his guns about not exposing all the senior players to this form of cricket. Bearing this in mind, there was no surprise that all the players currently playing for SA “A” in Zimbabwe were left out. This includes Nel, Hall, Langeveldt, Botha, Ontong, van Wyk and Prince (who will join the squad for the second game).
My predictions were slightly wrong as Kallis was replaced by Bodi allowing for Peterson to be dropped as the quota target was reached. Van der Wath replaced Peterson, which adds depth to a rather untested bowling attack apart from Pollock and Ntini. Personally I would have liked to have seen Steyn get the nod and still believe he is the most dangerous bowler we have.
As predicted the Morkel brothers were selected, and if South Africa want to shine, Morne Morkel in particular needs to deliver the goods. If his bowling is accurate, South Africa has a good chance to win the tournament. If there is any shortcoming in the South African line up it will be the in the bowling department, as South Africa have picked a squad full of all rounders instead of specialist bowlers.
The squad selected is a strong one, with a nice blend of youth and experience and will perform strongly in this tournament. The squad consists of: Graeme Smith (capt), Gulam Bodi, Loots Bosman, Mark Boucher, AB de Villiers, JP Duminy, Herschelle Gibbs, Justin Kemp, Albie Morkel, Mornè Morkel, Makhaya Ntini, Vernon Philander, Shaun Pollock, Thandi Tshabalala and Johan van der Wath.