The rivalry between South Africa and Australia has always been an intensely contested one over the years. The two sides have been involved in some epic classic games and their rivalry is all set to resume in the upcoming tri-series, which also features hosts West Indies.
The recent form of the two sides has been a little contrasting, though. While South Africa won the ODI series against England at home 3-2 in heroic fashion after being 0-2 down, the same cannot be said about Australia. The Kangaroos, after a great outing against India, where they won 4-1 at home, were humiliated by New Zealand. A key reason behind Australia’s failure in New Zealand was the absence of pacer Mitchell Starc. Starc has been Australia’s go-to bowler for quite a while now, and with Starc achieving full fitness, the Australians are favorites for the tri-series.
South Africa coach Russell Domingo admitted that the Proteas were wary of the threat possessed by Starc. “We’ve played him before, we know he’s a quality bowler, a great reverse swing exponent, good with the new ball, good at the back end,” Domingo said.
“But he’s also come off quite a lengthy break as well, so it will probably take him a little bit of time to get back into his rhythm and find his pace again. “But that’s why you play, you want to play against the best sides in the world. It’s an opportunity to improve our one-day ranking by playing a side ranked above us,” Domingo added.
Domingo also clarified that the Proteas would not underestimate West Indies. “We will never, and have never discounted the West Indies,” Domingo said. “They have three more World Cups than we do, and they got them in one year.”