Afghanistan confirms a spot in the Champions Trophy, while South Africa secures second place and a quarterfinal matchup with Australia.
In their last Cricket World Cup group match, South Africa overcame a valiant comeback from Afghanistan to win by five wickets with fifteen balls remaining and secure second place in the rankings.
With nine games played, South Africa has 14 points, two more than Australia, who face Bangladesh on Saturday, and Afghanistan, who are in sixth place.
Australia and South Africa are scheduled to meet each other in Kolkata on Thursday. Both teams have already advanced to the semifinals.
Temba Bavuma, the captain of South Africa, stated, “They say winning is a habit so we want to take that momentum through, we take a lot of confidence.”
“Today we changed our strategy; instead of batting first as usual, we batted second. We’ll feel more confident if we can cross that line.
“We hope to play here in front of a full house once more [in the final].” However, we must first overcome an obstacle in Kolkata against Australia.
On Friday, Afghanistan chose to bat first, but they were unable to form partnerships as South Africa consistently took wickets.
On the strength of Azmatullah Omarzai’s unbroken 97, which featured seven boundaries and three sixes, the Asian team scored 244 in 50 overs.
Kagiso Rabada gave up just three runs in the last over, but Azmatullah was the only player to put up a fight and appeared headed for his maiden ODI century.
With scores of 4-44, Gerald Coetzee emerged as the most effective bowler for South Africa, and Quinton de Kock finished with six catches to share the record for most wicketkeeping dismissals in a World Cup game.De Kock responded by setting the tone for the chase with a crisp 41 that put him atop the tournament scoring statistics with 591 runs, but they were in serious trouble at 182-5.
Nevertheless, Rassie van der Dussen (76 not out) led the Proteas home by combining with Andile Phehlukwayo for a 65-run partnership. In the 48th over, Phehlukwayo hit the winning runs with a stunning six over deep mid-wicket.
We had a beautiful platform, which made it simple for me to arrive and evaluate the situation. An anchor is necessary for any chase, according to van der Dussen.
“We’ve seen the potential of our hitting order. There are some solid alliances between us in the midst.
Following the game, Bavuma claimed that his “stubborn” personality will help him manage his injuries as he works to get to the World Cup final.
“I have a hurting leg. I’ll be alright; I’m not sure how bad it is yet. “I am obstinate; everything will work out,” said the 33-year-old, who scored 23 runs on Friday.
“I could not have batted, but I want to be out there for my team,” Bavuma continued. An sickness kept him out of the tournament’s previous victories against Bangladesh and England.
I didn’t want to pass up the chance to have some in-between time. I think it’s crucial to lead this squad, manage the bowlers, and continue developing that, so I thought staying out there was the appropriate move.
Afghanistan, on the other hand, completed their most successful World Cup campaign to date with four victories and guaranteed a spot in the Champions Trophy.
Though the squad was originally thought of as World Cup underdogs, skipper Hashmatullah Shahidi said the competition was a fantastic learning experience since they produced some unexpected victories.
He declared, “We played big teams, we fought till the end, and we sent a good message to the world.”
“I’m happy of our batsmen’s performance in this competition; before to the event, we were having difficulties. It’s a good thing to be thinking forward.
“We have good spin department, that much is clear, but we can be a very good side if we maintain our bat-first momentum.”