England and South Africa clashed in the World Cup at Wankhede. South Africa won the match by 229 runs. England have suffered their worst defeat yet.
England lost their last match against Afghanistan and South Africa lost their last match against Netherlands. Both the teams entered this match with the intention of recovering from that huge upset. South African captain Bouma did not play in this match due to ill health. Aiden Markram was the captain of the South African team. Jos Buttler won the toss and elected to bowl.
Topley dropped Teacock at the start but the next 3 batsmen stood firm and led the team to a good score. Reesha Henriques and Vander Dussen both crossed fifties. Markram were bowled out for 42 runs. Henrik Klaasen and Marco Jansson threatened action in the final stages. The South African team added 112 runs in the last 7 overs alone. As a result, South Africa reached 399 runs. Henrik Clausen was dismissed for 109 off 67 balls. Marco Jansson was unbeaten on 75 off 42 balls.
The target for England is 400. The team should have fought and taken this match close to the situation England are in. But England secured victory for South Africa in the first 12 overs. Bairstow, Malan, Root, Stokes, Brooke, Buttler all the important batsmen of England were out within 12 overs. In the name of playing attacking, all of them looked for the fielders and returned to the pavilion after giving the catch. In the end, Markwood and Atkinson added some runs and England took a decent score. Even so, England could not reduce that big defeat. England lost by 229 runs.
It’s disappointing to see a defending champion team play so poorly. The England team is stuck between saying they are playing attacking cricket and not playing it fully, it is a different style in the set. ‘They have batters up to number 10. But, even if we are out, they have the idea that the next person will take care of them. No one danced by realizing the situation and taking the responsibility on their back.’
Nasir Hussain, the former captain of the England team, had said this when he lost that first match against New Zealand. The same thing happened in yesterday’s match. Chasing 400 runs should have at least one or two 100+ run partnerships. Only then could the competition have been brought closer. But none of the players in the England team thought about the partnership at all. Their focus was on hitting fours and sixes individually. That is enough to win a T20 match. But an ODI match cannot be won with this mindset. England played attacking in the 2019 World Cup. It also focused on playing together as a team by being aware of the situation. Was it the partnership formed by Buttler and Stokes that made England win the World Cup?
And not just the match against South Africa. Throughout this series, the England team has not focused on building partnerships. In the 4 matches played so far, only two have put up 100+ run partnerships. Both of those came against Bangladesh. England won that match too. England batsmen had only put together a maximum of one 50+ partnership in the other 3 matches. England lost all 3 matches. At least the England team should realize this and act.
England still have 5 matches left. Only if we win these 5 matches will we have a chance to fight for that fourth place in the points table. But in the current state of England, that is unlikely to happen. Let’s wait and see.