West Indies v South Africa, 1st T20, Antigua

After the Lord Mayor's show

The Preview by Andrew Miller

May 18, 2010

Comments: 15 | Text size: A | A

Match Facts

Wednesday, May 19, Antigua
Start time 1400 (1800 GMT)

Graeme Smith kicks a football, Antigua, May 18 2010
Graeme Smith's team will look to put a disappointing World Twenty20 campaign behind them © AFP

The Big Picture

The World Twenty20 has been and gone, and while the tournament itself was an undoubted success, for the two teams who line up in Antigua on Wednesday, it was another anticlimactic affair. West Indies believed that home advantage could help propel them to their first piece of ICC silverware since 2004; South Africa believed that their experienced outfit could quash that lingering suspicion that they crumble when the pressure is at its most intense.

Alas, both teams were dumped out of the tournament in the Super Eights, and the recriminations for the South Africans have been particularly long and loud. Despite boasting two of the most fearsome pace bowlers in the tournament in Dale Steyn and Morne Morkel, not to mention the canny Charl Langeveldt, it was their batsmen who struggled to lay the necessary foundations for victory.

Stalwarts such as Jacques Kallis, Herschelle Gibbs, Mark Boucher and even the inspirational Graeme Smith were made to look old by livelier and hungrier opponents - not least the eventual champions, England - and with recriminations underway at the selectorial level, the coming weeks could well be a last hurrah for many members of South Africa's limited-overs set-up.

Form guide (most recent first)

South Africa LLWWL
West Indies LWLWW

Watch out for...

Kieron Pollard promised much but delivered little in the World Twenty20. In consecutive innings, he mustered scores of 8, 0, 9, 17 and 13, and without his incendiary lower-middle-order blazing, West Indies struggled to post the sort of indomitable scores that could have rescued their campaign.

AB de Villiers will be donning the wicket-keeping gloves in place of Mark Boucher and his agility and skill behind the wickets will be tested. He was South Africa's top run-getter in the World Twenty20, and it remains to be seen how he copes with the added responsibility.

Team news

Wavell Hinds, who managed just five runs in his two matches in the World Twenty20, has been omitted from the West Indies squad. Andre Fletcher, who has fond memories of Antigua following his role in the Stanford 20/20 for 20, could slot back into the line-up.

West Indies (possible) 1 Chris Gayle (capt), 2 Shivnarine Chanderpaul, 3 Ramnaresh Sarwan, 4 Kieron Pollard, 5 Dwayne Bravo, 6 Andre Fletcher, 7 Darren Sammy, 8 Denesh Ramdin (wk), 9 Sulieman Benn, 10 Jerome Taylor, 11 Kemar Roach.

South Africa have announced that AB de Villiers will keep wicket for the T20 games at least, as part of their plans for the World Cup, and have axed the experienced Boucher. Coach Corrie van Zyl had said in the aftermath of his team's exit from the World Twenty20 that some "hard calls" may have to be made, and dropping Boucher is the first among them.

With Wayne Parnell still absent through injury, South Africa's selectors have taken the opportunity to draft in an extra batsman, the 20-year-old Dolphins left-hander, David Miller. With a 60-ball 115 for South Africa A during their recent match against Bangladesh A in Mirpur, he's got sufficient form to justify an exploratory debut - possibly at the expense of Herschelle Gibbs.

South Africa (possible) 1 Graeme Smith (capt), 2 Loots Bosman, 3 Jacques Kallis, 4 AB de Villiers (wk), 5 David Miller, 6 JP Duminy, 7 Johan Botha, 8 Morne Morkel, 9 Dale Steyn, 10 Roelof van der Merwe, 11 Charl Langeveldt

Pitch and conditions

It's a significant day for cricket in Antigua, as the sport returns to the Sir Vivian Richards Stadium in North South, the scene of the farcical abandoned Test during England's tour last year. The sandy surface has been stripped bare and relaid, and has been passed fit for use by the ICC. We shall see what transpires ...

Stats and trivia

  • West Indies and South Africa have met on four previous occasions in Twenty20 cricket. South Africa have had the better of those meetings, with three wins to one, including a 20-run triumph in the last World Twenty20 in England.

  • Chris Gayle became the first man to score a Twenty20 international century when the teams first met in this format, during the 2007 World Twenty20. It wasn't enough to carry his team to victory, however.


    "The guys stayed in their rooms for about a day trying to deal with the situation. Corrie van Zyl called us in individually and harsh words were spoken."
    Albie Morkel admits that South Africa underperformed during the World Twenty20.

Andrew Miller is UK editor of Cricinfo

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© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

Posted by Adolfhitler89 on (May 19, 2010, 14:46 GMT)

I don't understand why Boucher & Gibbs are still selected by the selectors? Their career is over,they are finished & are of no good. Selectors must give youngsters a chance. Smith is a good captain there's no doubt in it. Kallis is good for all formats of the game.

Posted by   on (May 19, 2010, 13:16 GMT)

its amassive test for both teams especially as south africa kook to get the right batting combinations.

Posted by BellCurve on (May 19, 2010, 12:35 GMT)

@ Saikat_bd - You obviously have a keen cricketing brain and a firm grasp of the English language. Thank you for sharing your brilliants ideas with the rest of us.

Posted by   on (May 19, 2010, 8:00 GMT)

This tour is their last chance with me - they fail and my TV stays off next season - I do not want to see a single Dil-scoop from AB, a no-ball from Morné Morkel and a last-gasp-for-breath-after-running-a-single from the captain. Just go out there and wack it - t20 is not about averages/stats - it's not about safety - there are no draws - not even TIES...you don't smack it - you lose...and bowlers please, you only have 24 balls to concentrate on - put your foot down before the stupid line and at least aim it in the right place - 4 wides and no-balls - really, really...

Posted by   on (May 19, 2010, 7:42 GMT)

Like the pitch they're playing on, South Africa have to 'relay' their batting order especially opening.

Posted by RVD22 on (May 19, 2010, 7:24 GMT)

I think it would be a well contested series... I would love to see Pollard smacking Steyn for sixes...!!!

Posted by HostileJ on (May 19, 2010, 7:17 GMT)

saikat_bd mate....you are obviously very disappointed in our WC performance but you cant just drop the whole team....Kallis and DeVilliers were our most consistent performers so you can't touch either of them..Duminy played good knocks here and there and so did Smith (even though I agree about the doubt in captaincy I feel Smith has always been the most consistent in these tourneys...give the guy a break...). Gibbs and Boucher must go (ito 20/20 at least) but I hope SA has learnt from their mistakes by leaving out players such as Hashim Amla,Alviro Petersen and Ryan MacLaren. Yes, Miller is good enough but where is he going to fit in the ODIs if he performs now? And why the hell play guys like bosman and kleinveldt and vd merwe who are useless players that do not belong in international cricket....?

Posted by   on (May 19, 2010, 6:15 GMT)

To MayankAgarwal: Could you please post once more - this time in English? Thank you.

Posted by MayankAgarwal on (May 19, 2010, 3:05 GMT)

I remembr the frst time these two teams met...in T-20 WC '07...wht a game of cricket tht ws!!bt as of nw bth the teams r in horribl form,,being knocked out of WC in super Eights...ths time WI wnt rely much on home advntage,,nd SA wll like to get back on wnng track again frm here only...Plyrs to look fr-- WI--Pollard,,Gayle,,Sammy SA--Kallis,,Steyn,,Bosman.. fr sure lt wll b a gd game!!

Posted by Tjoeps on (May 19, 2010, 2:42 GMT)

Both teams has a lot to prove to their supporters, it should be an interesting series. As a South African I am duty bound to support the Proteas, but they make that very difficult with the way they play at times.... PLEASE if ABdeV plays that stupid scoop shot again, ban him from Cricket for LIVE! If the plan still is to bat around JK, then the other guys need to get a move on, in the first 6 overs, that is were we loose the plot every time! Good luck and enjoy the encounter....

Posted by Saikat_Chakraborty on (May 19, 2010, 1:23 GMT)

I wana gibbs,boucher,JP and smith/kallis out from team.

Posted by   on (May 19, 2010, 1:00 GMT)

west indies will win the 20/20s

Posted by yorkieT on (May 18, 2010, 19:06 GMT)

Albie Morkel isn't even in squad and is back in South Africa, Watch for him by all means ... but you won't see him!

Posted by hollandindian on (May 18, 2010, 19:01 GMT)

Gosh. Didnt even know that these two will play a little series!! (im a die hard cricketfan whos 24/7 on cricinfo!!)

Posted by westindies4life on (May 18, 2010, 18:16 GMT)

West Indies team should have been...... 1.Gayle 2. Barath 3. Darren Bravo 4. Sarwan 5. Chanderpaul 6. Dwayne Bravo 7. Pollard 8. Sammy/Benn 9. Ramdin/Simmions 10. Taylor 11. Roach

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Andrew Miller Andrew Miller was saved from a life of drudgery in the City when his car caught fire on the way to an interview. He took this as a sign and fled to Pakistan where he witnessed England's historic victory in the twilight at Karachi (or thought he did, at any rate - it was too dark to tell). He then joined Wisden Online in 2001, and soon graduated from put-upon photocopier to a writer with a penchant for comment and cricket on the subcontinent. In addition to Pakistan, he has covered England tours in Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, South Africa, Australia and New Zealand, as well as the World Cup in the Caribbean in 2007
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