'To not lift the trophy after getting so close hurts' - South Africa coach Hilton Moreeng after T20 World Cup heartbreak

South Africa lost to Australia by 19 runs in the final.

By Koustav Sengupta

Updated - Mar 02, 2023, 13:01 IST

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After a crushing defeat at the hands of Sri Lanka in the 2023 Women’s T20 World Cup campaign, South Africa made a strong comeback and eventually qualified for the all-important final. However, on the big night, the Sune Luus-led side failed to keep Australia under pressure as despite playing well, the Proteas suffered a 19-run defeat. Their coach Hilton Moreeng has opened up on the loss and said that it still hurts the team.

Meanwhile, Moreeng lauded the team for showing a lot of character and determination in the global event and talked about their journey in the tournament.

“We knew that we were hosting the World Cup and it was not going to be easy because it comes with its challenges and pressures that you get daily. But how the team responded after the first game shows the character of the team and determination,” said Moreeng in a press conference.

“To get ourselves in the final and get so close, for us to not lift the trophy, we are still hurting. We can’t win them all, everyone in the entire squad gave it their all. We have no regrets about what has happened and transpired at the World Cup, we can only be proud. The legacy continues because this is a talented bunch of cricketers that’s always wanted to leave a footprint in South Africa,” he added. 

We have a very capable squad to win the World Cup: Moreeng

Even though they failed to clinch the trophy this time around, Moreeng believes that they have a good squad that can challenge for the title next year. He also stated that the core group of the team is young and the U-19 stars can also join them to make it a formidable side.

“It is very realistic, we have a very capable squad of winning the World Cup. The core of the team is very young and with the experience everyone had in the past World Cup, they can only grow and learn from it and get better. Even the youngsters that were watching the U-19s are hoping to make the transition to the senior team, see what the standard is,” the 45-year-old concluded.

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