South Africa revive T20 World Cup hopes after big win over Bangladesh

Six-wicket victory moves Proteas to two points behind leaders England in Group 1

South Africa bounced back from their opening defeat to Australia with their third straight win, which gives them a great shot at a spot in the last four stage of the T20 World Cup.

The Proteas thumped Bangladesh with six wickets and 39 balls to spare to move two points behind runaway Group 1 leaders England at the Zayed Cricket Stadium in Abu Dhabi on Tuesday.

After deciding to field first in the first of the two games at the venue, South Africa dismissed Bangladesh for 84 in 18.2 overs. Temba Bavuma hit a 28-ball 31 to take them over the line.

Kagiso Rabada grabbed two wickets in two deliveries in the fourth over to provide the early break, before finishing with 3-20 in four overs. Anrich Nortje wrapped it up by taking 3-8 in 3.2 overs.

“We've just been doing the basics and KG was really good today as well,” Nortje said during the innings break.

“Simple plans, we just tried to bowl a hard line and length. There was a bit of swing today as well, and we utilised it well.

“I've just been focusing on my lines - where I'm running to, where my arms are going to. We don't want to take the foot off the gas [on the NRR calculations], so well done to the boys, we did that well.”

Bangladesh took the field having never won against South Africa in the format, and the story continued on Tuesday after some high-quality pace bowling.

“Quite a lot in the wicket early on, but full credit to KG and Nortje for exploiting it,” the South African captain Bavuma said of the win.

“It's never easy when you have one guy bowling 150 and another getting so much out of the wicket with his skill. It's a big game [next against England], looking at the competition the way it is. They have had the better of us recently, and we would like to change that.”

South Africa meet England in their final Super 12 group match at Sharjah stadium on Saturday.

Bangladesh captain Mahmudullah blamed batting after his side suffered their third defeat in as many games.

“I think the wicket was pretty good to bowl on in the first half but we weren't good enough in the middle,” he said.

“That was a poor batting display, but having said that there was enough assistance in the pitch. It's frustrating, but we could have won two games. If we had won those games, it would have been a different story.”

Updated: November 2nd 2021, 2:45 PM