SA v Australia, 2nd T20I, Durban

Rain threat looms large in Durban

The Preview by Firdose Moonda

March 11, 2014

Comments: 40 | Text size: A | A

Albie Morkel launches the ball for six, New Zealand v South Africa, 3rd ODI, Auckland, March 3, 2012
Albie Morkel hasn't played a T20I since October 2012 © Getty Images
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Match facts

March 12, 2014, Kingsmead, Durban

Start time 1800 (1600GMT)

Big Picture

There is less than two weeks to go before both these sides play their first match at the World T20, and they are facing the possibility of going into the tournament without much practice in the shortest format. The first match of the series was washed out and the forecast does not look promising for the next two.

That will leave both Australia and South Africa short of match-time ahead of a tournament neither have won, something which will concern South Africa more. Given the expectation thrust on them to bring home an ICC trophy, South Africa are doing all they can to refine their squad to ensure success. They need the time to have a trial run and experiment with some of the newer combinations they may have.

Australia may have less reasons to worry, having come off three T20I wins. They would want to have the time to find room for the players they have recalled and to have another opportunity to dent their old foe ahead of a major tournament.

Form guide


(completed matches, most recent first)

South Africa LWWWL
Australia WWWLL

Watch out for

Albie Morkel will make a long awaited return to the South African XI after being out in the cold since the end of the 2012 World T20. Albie had a strong domestic season after taking an extended break from the game to rejuvenate himself and seems to have found a new lease on his cricketing life. He will be expected to finish the innings fast and contribute as a fourth seamer. Albie is thought to be South Africa's trump card as they aim for an ICC trophy.

After three centuries in the Test matches David Warner may have thought his South African trip could not get any better. But he has since proposed to Candice Falzon and revealed that they were expecting their first child. Warner will hope the good times keep rolling in. With his usual aggressive, carefree style of batting, he has bullied South Africa's bowlers all summer and, if the weather allows him to, he will want to do it again, albeit in a different format.

Team news

Dale Steyn was spotted strolling on the Sea Point promenade in Cape Town on Monday, confirming his unavailability until the final match. South Africa are yet to play a match with their new combinations which include Albie Morkel and Beuran Hendricks. The team will want to field both of them before heading to Bangladesh.

South Africa: (possible) 1 Hashim Amla, 2 Quinton de Kock (wk), 3 Faf du Plessis (capt), 4 AB de Villiers, 5 JP Duminy, 6 David Miller, 7 Albie Morkel, 8 and 9 Wayne Parnell/Kyle Abbott/Beuran Hendricks, 10 Morne Morkel 10, 11 Imran Tahir

Brad Hogg may have to wait a little longer before becoming the oldest man to represent Australia since Clarrie Grimmett, because of a hamstring strain. James Faulkner is still being monitored as he makes his return.

Australia: (possible) 1 David Warner, 2 Aaron Finch, 3 Shane Watson, 4 George Bailey (capt), 5 Cameron White/Brad Hodge, 6 Glenn Maxwell, 7 Brad Haddin (wk), 8 Daniel Christian, 9 Mitchell Starc, 10 Nathan Coulter-Nile, 11 James Muirhead

Conditions

Rain has been sweeping across South Africa and Durban has not been spared. Although Wednesday morning is forecast to be clear, wet weather and strong winds are expected to arrive by the afternoon and continue into the evening, which could mean a curtailed affair. Despite the threat of a wet blanket, over 17,00 tickets have been sold for the match as the Durban public gear up for the last international of the summer.

Stats and Trivia

Warner and Shane Watson have each raised their bats to 10 half-centuries in T20 cricket, Australia's most number of fifties in the format. Contrastingly, South Africa have no players with 10 fifties, but JP Duminy (6) and AB de Villiers (4) have 10 between them.

The last time Kingsmead was scheduled to host a T20, last March, it was abandoned because of rain. South Africa were due to play Pakistan on that occasion.

Quotes

"They want me to finish the games with David Miller, AB and JP. The four of us will be looking to bat overs from 10 to 20."

Albie Morkel will be back as South Africa's big-hitting blaster as they hope to end their innings strongly

"In the T20 format, as a bowler, you've only got 24 balls so you've got to make sure that you execute perfectly. I like the challenge of opening the bowling. When you've only got two fielders out, it's always tough to bowl when the batsmen are looking to hit you over the top."

The small margin for error makes playing the shortest format enticing for Mitchell Starc

Firdose Moonda is ESPNcricinfo's South Africa correspondent

RSS Feeds: Firdose Moonda

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

Posted by tearisle on (March 12, 2014, 18:34 GMT)

well as a sri lankan I always supported the great south african teams.An I would always root for the proteas against australia. go AB go take the aussies to the cleaners. Love for south africa from sri lanka

Posted by ModernUmpiresPlz on (March 12, 2014, 18:14 GMT)

@Mukund Ami I find it more frustrating that the umpires have absolutely no sense of urgency when it comes to starting a T20 game when it rains. Oh, it rained, better inspect this flat and barely moistened pitch for 45 minutes. Oh no, it drizzled after our inspection and before play began, better wait half an hour to gather our energy for another inspection and then inspect it for another 20 minutes just in case absolutely nothing changed. It's a rather stupid looking thing to watch.

Posted by   on (March 12, 2014, 17:50 GMT)

Aussies would have surely won today.

Posted by   on (March 12, 2014, 17:48 GMT)

It's disgusting that a T20 is cancelled due to rain.

Posted by wapuser on (March 12, 2014, 16:27 GMT)

Proteas best of luck and hope the rain stops so that sa batsman can start the rain of sixes

Posted by blu_gg on (March 12, 2014, 16:11 GMT)

I don't understand why venues cannot be changed if it is known that there's the possibility of rain.

Posted by wapuser on (March 12, 2014, 15:52 GMT)

Always support to South Africa When they are not against pakistan.. Love you Protease from Pakistan,,,,

Posted by   on (March 12, 2014, 15:46 GMT)

What pathetic weather. Not their fault I guess but this is why Australia is awesome. They are one of the few countries that actually have 4 seasons.

Posted by   on (March 12, 2014, 14:59 GMT)

rain stopped the flood of runs from ab devillers's bat.

Posted by BellCurve on (March 12, 2014, 14:36 GMT)

@ Aran Kumar - It is Durban. The only savanna you'll find is served chilled with a slice of lemon.

Posted by wapuser on (March 12, 2014, 14:01 GMT)

Australia will win the first match if rain has not come into picture.

Posted by   on (March 12, 2014, 13:32 GMT)

let it rains,many Savannah creatures will be benefited

Posted by   on (March 12, 2014, 13:10 GMT)

Today i hope we watch the good cricket between Australia and s.africa

Posted by   on (March 12, 2014, 12:37 GMT)

i hope today we watch some action

Posted by   on (March 12, 2014, 12:03 GMT)

I hope today we see some action !

Posted by Jagger on (March 12, 2014, 11:39 GMT)

Very revealing Sean Marsh is not on the list of probables in the format that got him noticed again...

Posted by Pavinasen on (March 12, 2014, 10:57 GMT)

I am not sure for how long in the future say a month or abit more,can the weather man forecast the weather.If thats so then CSA must first look at its preffered venue if not affected by weather go ahead ,but if there is a possibility of rain then rearrange for another venue.I am not sure of the implications,apart from those that bought tickets well in advance

Posted by unlocker on (March 12, 2014, 9:53 GMT)

When a series will be held in southafrica or srilanka ,rain is all time comeing in front ,as far as my memory for rain washed huge match ,and in the match middle match target fully changed due to d/l method

Icc should take step about rain ,if match washout then same match can be arranged another day .

Ok ,Australia t20 team is really played good cricket from last 1 year ,excellent finishers ,hard hiter batsman ,also they have good first bowler with low economy rate bowler .but on the other side South Africa player quality is not big difference from Australia .aistralia is fabroute but I think this match will win southafrica

Best of luck

Posted by VMM2 on (March 12, 2014, 9:09 GMT)

1. deKock 2. Hash 3. AB 4. Faf 5. JP 6. Miller 7. Albie 8. Parnell/Abbot 9. Tsotsobe/Hendricks 10. Morne 11. Tahir/Phangiso

Posted by Newlandsfaithful on (March 12, 2014, 8:41 GMT)

One has to feel that CSA never considers weather to be a factor when scheduling cricket matches. Here in Cape Town we are desperate for rain, but not a chance. One wishes there was a better financial / organisational model so that venues could be flexible when rain becomes a factor, but not in this lifetime.

Posted by   on (March 12, 2014, 7:11 GMT)

1. Wade 2. Warner 3. Antter 4. Shallu 5. Ashish 6. Deepak 7. Puture wala 8. Amit 9. Deepu 10. Pankaj 11. Lakha

Posted by mondotv on (March 12, 2014, 6:58 GMT)

@Siddharth87 - I'm not sure Cam White should play at all. He had a terrific Domestic 20/20 and played some good innings against England. But the slow pitches in Sri Lanka will not suit him. He has always struggled against good spin on sluggish pitches. And funnily enough dart bowlers like Treadwell marked the beginning of his original dropping from the Australian team. He used to go out in a one day international, scratch around for 10 off 30 then get out. We'll see - he has been in awesome form this year. I would prefer Watson to be facing the quicks early.

Posted by wanatawu on (March 12, 2014, 6:21 GMT)

Almost all of SA got summer rainfall, except the Northern Cape( Kimberley) and Western Cape(Cape Town) who are in the winter rains and dry summers category, CSA has dropped the ball again by not having at least one game at these venues. i expect the last one also to be rain out cose rain is forecast for Centurion till Wednesday the 19th.

Posted by Protears on (March 12, 2014, 5:48 GMT)

Watch out for Imran Tahir in this format, like Afridi rushes through overs and is more deceptive when the batsmen cannot block out. Making up your mind and reading variations is tougher and he has found a lot of success in the shorter games.

Posted by m0se on (March 12, 2014, 5:46 GMT)

I read that as "Raina threat looms large in Durban" and was confused for a bit.

Posted by PrasPunter on (March 12, 2014, 4:44 GMT)

@Jose, I still have scary memories of Albie blasting us in an ODI series down-under. He is a very good hitter and does pose a threat.

Posted by din7 on (March 12, 2014, 3:46 GMT)

is it raining evrywhere in SA? why doesnt CSA act quickly and postpone those matches to alternate days on some other grounds i dont think CA will have any problem, this way CSA is goin to lose lot of revenue. if its indeed not raining in other parts then thats really shameful on part of CSA to not act quickly and lose all revenue...

Posted by disco_bob on (March 12, 2014, 0:54 GMT)

Australia were short of time in the middle for the Test series and it didn't matter at Centurion. It will matter even less for T20 which is always a lottery anyway.

Posted by   on (March 12, 2014, 0:07 GMT)

dont wry for haddin.... recently hr has done a good glovework behind the stumps. thatswhy he is in d team because one margin of error behind d stumps can cost d match

Posted by wapuser on (March 11, 2014, 20:01 GMT)

Rain Rain plz go away. Let them play.....wana see white, warner nd specially baily... Blasters

Posted by Ragav999 on (March 11, 2014, 17:15 GMT)

Thank God that the rains did not affect the wonderful Test series a week back a lot.

Posted by   on (March 11, 2014, 16:22 GMT)

Albie had played 20-20 against all the players in the OZ team (except Muirhead), several times, over the very many IPL matches he played for CSK; he being an integral part of CSK, since the inception of IPL.

Posted by siddhartha87 on (March 11, 2014, 15:43 GMT)

Cam White should bat in top 3 ,Watson should bat no 4 in wt20.Playing XI should be- 1.Finch 2.Warner 3.White 4.Watson 5.Bailey 6.Maxwell 7. Haddin 8.Faulkner 9.Johnson 10. Coulter Nile 11.Hogg

Posted by   on (March 11, 2014, 15:20 GMT)

dont know what will happen with white,in past matches he has been played well as a opening batsman now they are three opening batsman in the team I think white will lose his place n hodge will replace him.

Posted by   on (March 11, 2014, 15:09 GMT)

Been raining in JHB and surrounds, solidly for 2 and a half weeks. Flooding, road closures, all sorts...... heard on the radio this morning that it is the most rainfall in March in JHB for the last 100 years. Hectic stuff - ohhhh and it's still raining outside.

Posted by   on (March 11, 2014, 14:16 GMT)

Haddin is not a t20 player he should be replace with ben dunk

Posted by   on (March 11, 2014, 14:12 GMT)

Should open with cam white and warner if the weather holds good and why is Steve smith not playing, guess he came in as a T20 specialist all those years ago

Posted by   on (March 11, 2014, 13:50 GMT)

Cape Town, Cape Town, Cape Town! Capacity crowds and min chance of rain in summer. but i guess we need to share the cricket love

Posted by waqas-mazhar on (March 11, 2014, 13:49 GMT)

a good series is going to nothing.....

Posted by xtrafalgarx on (March 11, 2014, 13:35 GMT)

Wow, you would have thought the weather would have been scorching hot in SA whilst it's still summer but it just can't stop raining!

Comments have now been closed for this article

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