SA SCRAPE HOME

South Africa managed a 35 run victory against

Ireland, in their warm up match on Monday. The saying a miss is as good as a mile, comes to mind when the world can think of what could have been. I was nervously watching the updates which were rather delayed on cricinfo, and when they were 138/4 with both batsmen seemingly settled, I was pondering how I would write the story of

South Africa’s humiliation to the minnows. 

As mentioned in my previous post,

South Africa have relied on the heroics of Mark Boucher and other individual performance that have won matches in the past 12 months. There is good reason for Chappell indicating SA is not a contender in this cricket world cup. The biggest weapon SA has is unpredictability, or rather inconsistency.

There might be merit in the opinion that SA is one dimensional, however there are some of crickets finest destroyers from the past and future game breakers lined up in the side. Pollock, Ntini, Kallis, Hall, Gibbs, Boucher, De Villiers, Kemp and Smith can all destroy a side on their day, and if they all fire on the same day the side is unbeatable. Simply put

South Africa are world class, they can beat any side on their day. Unfortunately there is lack of consistency and the only players that have been consistent match winners in the last year are Boucher, Pollock and Ntini. The rest of the side has been below ordinary, and if one had to dig up the 2006 performances – by runs scored it is sad reading.

 Boucher top scored with 713 runs, then Gibbs on 691 then Dippennaar on 651. What shocked me was the attacks on Gibbs about how out of form he was and how he should be dropped. The stats speak differently: Boucher, De villiers and Dippennaar had an average above 40, Gibbs 35, Kallis 31 Pollock and Kemp 29 and the captain Smith on 28!!! These are the averages of our top players, Dippennar has fallen away, as had Rudolph who averaged 34……  The side currently playing has plenty of ability, however I along with many other cutthroat supporters want results not abilities!!! There is little excuse for the ICC champions trophy, amd there is no excuse for failing in this world cup.  

The side was selected with full knowledge of the pitches in the Caribbean and although the target quota was met, one has to wonder why Peterson is there, when Smith treats him with contempt, preferring to bowl himself and Bosman (A favourite of mine) who in the warm up match is batting at 8 – there is no excuse for that, what is his role?? If

South Africa are really serious about the world cup, the selctions don’t show it. Two places have been wasted which in such a small squad will prove costly.

 The beauty of cricket is its unpredictability, but if the pitches in the Caribbean are low and slow the history of South African cricketing failures will rear its head and it will be another 4 years before we can try win the tournament. Forewarned generally means forearmed however Failing to plan is planning to fail!!!