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South Africa has always furnished such teams which are capable enough to win the ICC Cricket World Cup. But, because of the extreme pressures and forces above and sometimes their own doing, they have faltered at crucial junctions in the World Cups. The current South African squad led by the ever-talented AB de Villiers, however, will look to shed the tag of ‘nearly men’ and ‘chokers’ and give South Africa their first major trophy.
South Africa’s ICC World Cup campaign has been a heart-breakers’ tale. They first participated in 1992 ICC Cricket World Cup. Right from their first step, the rain Gods conspired against them that time and in 2011 World Cup when they were the odds-on favorites to beat New Zealand team in the quarterfinals but, their batting line up collapsed as they all failed to cope with pressure.
The saddest history: South Africa vs Australia, semi-final, 1999:
Who can forget the breath taking semifinal match between Australia and South Africa in 1999 ICC World Cup??? It was a small situation of a tied semi-final with Australia, who advanced to final because of a group-stage win.
South Africa were desperate to win that semi-final against Australia, needing just one run to win off four balls with a wicket in hand. But a major mix-up between Lance Klusener and the tail ender Allan Donald gave the Australians the thoroughfare. In the coming World cup, more than beating their opponents, South African team will have to push back the pressure and battle the demons within. They have been weighed down by the pressure too many times.
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The prospects of Proteas
The scars of the past still exist, led by AB de Villiers, the most spectacular cricketer in recent times, it would not be hard to overcome the pressure situations. The Proteas will feel right at home in the soil of Australia and New Zealand. South Africa with a Classy batting line-up backed by dominating pace attacks, they can threat any teams in ICC World Cup 2015.
The bowling attack:
South Africa are at the same group with the defending Champions India. It may seem that, they will have a little problem getting past the group stage. But the bowling attacks with Morne Morkel, Dale Steyn and Imran Tahir, will surely cause more than a few problems for India’s mighty batting line-ups.
The batting line:
South Africa’s batting will be led by AB de Villiers. Yes, he is that AB who smashed the fastest century in the ODI history, off just 31 balls against West Indies, who frequently hover around the World No 1 in ODI ranking for last five years. However, his pressure of captaincy has not dimmed his outstanding form either.
And then comes Hashim Amla, another great batsman South Africa has ever produced. The solid batting skills of Amla at the top of the line, juxtaposed with the ruthlessness of JP Duminy and David Miller at middle order, leaves South Africa with a right mix of sanity and aggression.
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