South Africa vs England, 2nd ODI, Preview – Eoin Morgan and Co aim to level the series after Cape Town drubbing
The Proteas are unlikely to carry out any changes from the line-up that took the series lead in Cape Town.
Updated - Feb 6, 2020 5:06 pm
En route to England’s successful World Cup journey in 2019, they lost one of their three ODI bilateral series to South Africa over four years. Only Quinton De Kock and David Miller are part of the current squad from the outfit that came back from 0-2 to win the five-match series by 3-2 in 2016. As much as it stunned Eoin Morgan’s men back then, Proteas’ stranglehold with the ball and captain De Kock’s imperious show with the bat left them further spellbound on Tuesday.
South Africa had moved on from Chris Morris and Dale Steyn. Kagiso Rabada is rested. Imran Tahir has retired from the format. But it wouldn’t matter as the next generation of players stepped up to the fray to begin the rebuild of the ODI team in a manner only a few saw coming. On a slow Newlands deck, the hosts’ decision to field first came under scrutiny. Because only in 14 out of 42 games teams batting second won on this venue.
And Proteas’ took the series lead in Cape Town, having had almost all of their departments put to the test. The slow batting surface didn’t allow England to play their shots freely. Hence, they found themselves in a precarious situation.
The star of the show with the ball was Tabraiz Shamsi, whose three-wicket burst in the middle-overs never allowed England to recover to post a total out of South Africa’s reach. Yet, Joe Denly‘s fighting knock of 87 and his stand with Chris Woakes to leave the hosts’ chasing 259 gave them slightly an upper hand.
But the home side were in no mood to bottle the run-chase. Eoin Morgan and his seven bowlers had no answers to the 173-run stand between Proteas’ new skipper De Kock and Temba Bavuma. The pair methodically dismantled the English bowlers, getting value from their less risky shots, and rarely found themselves under pressure.
Bavuma’s knock of 98 radiated confidence and calmness witnessed during Hashim Amla’s presence at the crease. During the closing stages of the game, England did get two consolation wickets. However, it was only a matter of time before South Africa completed a record chase at the Newlands with seven wickets to spare.
Old problems came gushing in for England. On a deck where the ball stopped and came on to the bat, their batsmen had to hang in there before playing the glory shots. The Three Lions were bereft of six World Cup winners in this squad – two of which were Ben Stokes and Jos Buttler.
The tourists mainly had Joe Denly to thank for, who, in the absence of the bedrock of their successful World Cup campaign, performed a rescue mission with the bat to give them a fighting chance.
The toothlessness of the seven bowlers made them sorely miss Ben Stokes, whose golden arm often did the trick during the Test series. Moreover, the visitors left out Liam Plunkett from the squad and Adil Rashid from the playing eleven, who were the most effective between overs 11-40 in the last five years. But for all the demolition job by South Africa, they must be wary since this English team will come back hard to level the series in Durban.
The Proteas are unlikely to carry out any changes from the line-up that took the series lead in Cape Town. JJ Smuts and Tabraiz Shamsi did their job to perfection; however, the pacers need to up their game a bit. South Africa also need Reeza Hendricks to get a significant score, having made a fifty-plus score only once in the last eight innings.
Probable XI: Quinton de Kock (C & WK), Reeza Hendricks, Temba Bavuma, Rassie van der Dussen, JJ Smuts, David Miller, Andile Phehlukwayo, Beuran Hendricks, Lungi Ngidi, Lutho Sipamla, Tabraiz Shamsi
Ahead of the do or die game at the Kingsmead in Durban, the Englishmen are likely to make two changes. Moeen Ali could come in place of Tom Banton to give the visitors an extra frontline bowling option and a reputed choice with the bat down the order. Additionally, Adil Rashid may be preferred instead of Matt Parkinson, who went wicketless in the opening match in more than eight overs.
Probable XI: Jason Roy, Jonny Bairstow (wk), Joe Root, Eoin Morgan (C), Joe Denly, Tom Banton, Sam Curran/Moeen Ali, Chris Woakes, Tom Curran, Chris Jordan, Adil Rashid
Focus will be on:
Lungi Ngidi (South Africa)
Lungi Ngidi has been long viewed as one of the fast bowlers to spearhead the new-ball bowling attack along with Kagiso Rabada. Despite having a bowling average of 24.12, the 23-year old has either been inconsistent or ravaged by injuries of late.
The speedster played his first ODI on Tuesday since the game against Pakistan in the World Cup and went for 42 runs in seven overs without any wicket. With Rabada resting for the ODI series, Ngidi being the most experienced and one of the best has to take up the additional responsibility to prove his mettle.
Moeen Ali (England)
The match on Friday could be Moeen Ali’s first match for England since getting axed from the Ashes 2019 after featuring only in the first Test. The 32-year old also suffered a lean run of form in the World Cup due to which he was dropped midway from the playing eleven.
The time off from the sport due to burnout has revived his hunger to make a return to the fold. Leaving aside the Test return, for now, if selected in the second game, Ali’s all-round abilities and not to mention the experience would be invaluable for them even now and in the T20 World Cup.
Head to Head:
Played – 61 | Won by South Africa – 30 | Won by England – 27 | Tied – 1 | No result – 3
104 – Quinton De Kock needs 104 runs to go past JP Duminy’s tally of 5117 runs for South Africa. With the current form of the skipper in place, he can get there comfortably in the next two games.
3 – Chris Woakes and Adil Rashid need three wickets to go past Ian Botham’s 145 ODI wickets for England.
Andile Phehlukwayo recorded his best figures in ODIs of 9.5-2-22-4 at the Kingsmead in January 2019 against Pakistan.
TV – Sony Six, Sony Six HD
Live streaming – Sony LIV
Match Timings – 11:00 am (local), 4:30 pm (IST)