South Africa won their first game of the World Cup 2019 on Saturday against Afghanistan by nine wickets. Having beaten down since the beginning of the tournament, it looks difficult for South Africa to make the semi-finals. They have played a total of five games, losing three and winning one, the clash against Windies was called-off due to rain. Now they buckle up for their next game against New Zealand who has won all the three matches.
New Zealand has somehow upped their game while entering the tournament. They have defeated Sri Lanka, Bangladesh and Afghanistan whereas the game against India was left abandoned. It was the fourth match of the tournament that was called off owing to the weather conditions of England.
Proteas gearing up to grab another win against the Black Caps
With three points, South Africa is at the 7th position of the table and losing any game now would get them out of the tournament. Since the last two World Cups, New Zealand has been getting the better of South Africa. The wounds of 2015 World Cup defeat is still fresh in Proteas players’ mind.
Talking about the form of the Black Caps this time, South African pacer Chris Morris rates them as one of the favourites. Morris is impressed with the team balance, the in-form batting line and bowling figures.
“In my opinion, I think they are one of the favourites,” Morris told media in Cardiff on Saturday after South Africa’s 9-wicket win.
“They’ve got a really good team that is well balanced and well led,” said Morris.
The Proteas pacer doesn’t like calling the Kiwis as the ‘Dark Horse’
In the 2015 World Cup, New Zealand defeated South Africa by four wickets. They gave them the defeat that cost them the final of the World Cup. Their performance throughout the years has been getting better and better. They won the ODI series against Pakistan in January 2018. And earlier this year in a three-day series against Sri Lanka, the Kiwis won the series by 5-0.
Their performance has impressed the 32-year-old Proteas pacer. Morris doesn’t like tagging them as the ‘dark horses’, they are just that good.
“I don’t want to call them dark horses, because I think they deserve more than that. They are a world class team, so our discipline is going to have to be even tighter against them. They’re that good,” said impressed Morris.
The 32-years-old lanky pacer has played 38 ODI innings in which he has taken 41 wickets. Morris was left out of the 2015 premier tournament and was not picked even for the 2019 World Cup. However, an injury to Anrich Nortje got Morris into the tournament. In the first win of South Africa, Morris scalped three wickets for 13 runs in 6.1 overs.