England v South Africa, Womens World T20, semi-final, Mirpur April 3, 2014

Strong England face evolving SA

Match Facts

April 4, 2014, Mirpur
Start time 2.30pm (0830GMT)

The Big Picture

One of the powerhouses of women's cricket goes up against the surprise package of this tournament. England's women are now fully professional and the best resourced team in the world, but South Africa's progress to the semi-finals is the latest example of other sides closing the gap.

It is South Africa's first World T20 semi-final and only their second in a global tournament, after they reached the final four of the 2000 World Cup. Their progress was secured with a tremendous victory over New Zealand, who have a stellar record at international level. They were beaten by a captain's innings from Mignon du Preez, who made 51 off 47 balls.

England recovered from losing their opening match against West Indies to win their next three. Their batting has struggled a little in the group stage - only Charlotte Edwards has more than 100 runs - but their bowling has been impressive. Anya Shrubsole leads the way, but of those who have bowled regularly Jenny Gunn has the most expensive economy and it still only sits at 5.15.

South Africa's batting has shown to have considerable power - they are second to Australia in sixes hit - and could be able to put pressure on England's bowlers, which they did not encounter in their matches against Sri Lanka, Bangladesh and India. Everything points to England reaching another final, but the women's game is becoming harder to predict.

Form guide

(Completed matches, most recent first)

England WWWLL
South Africa WWLWL

Watch out for

In the absence of the injured Katherine Brunt, Anya Shrubsole has taken on the mantle of the attack leader and has done so with considerable success. She currently has 10 wickets in the four matches - the most by an England bowler in a World T20 and just one short of Julie Hunter's record from the 2012 tournament - at an eye-popping strike-rate of 9.60 and an economy rate of 3.56. She will test the skill of South Africa's top order.

Marizanne Kapp is South Africa's joint leading wicket-taker at the tournament with seven wickets, including a crucial 3 for 23 against New Zealand that contained the scalp of top scorer Sophie Devine. Then, with South Africa's chase on the verge of difficulty at 52 for 3, she compiled a calm 23 off 24 balls in a match-winning stand of 54 with captain du Preez.

Team news

England: 1 Sarah Taylor (wk), 2 Charlotte Edwards (capt), 3 Heather Knight, 4 Lydia Greenway, 5 Nat Sciver, 6 Amy Jones, 7 Jenny Gunn, 8 Georgia Elwiss, 9 Danielle Hazell, 10 Anya Shrubsole, 11 Rebecca Grundy

South Africa: 1 Lizelle Lee, 2 Dane van Niekerk, 3 Trisha Chetty (wk), 4 Mignon du Preez (capt), 5 Marizanne Kapp, 6 Chloe Tryon, 7 Shandre Fritz, 8 Sune Luus, 9 Shabnim Ismail, 10 Sunette Loubser, 11 Moseline Daniels

Pitch and conditions

There was some turn in the first semi-final but it was slow, and it was easier to score when pace was on the ball. A new pitch will be used for the second semi, but conditions are unlikely to be vastly different.

Stats and trivia

  • England have not hit a six in the tournament; South Africa have managed 10

  • England have not lost to South Africa in eight previous T20s - their last defeat to them in any format was in an ODI in Port Elizabeth in 2004

  • Dane van Niekerk and Lizelle Lee are the first two South Africa batsmen to score more than 100 runs in a World T20


"Two years ago, when we played them I said they would be a force to be reckoned with within the next few years, and to see them play so well the other night kind of backed up what I was thinking a couple of years ago."
Charlotte Edwards on the challenge posed by South Africa

"I think the formula we have been using has worked for us so far and we're happy to continue with things the way that they are."
Mignon du Preez

Andrew McGlashan is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo