South Africa in Australia – A Preview




If I had to pick two teams to provide entertainment over the course of a Test Match, I’d undoubtedly pick Australia and South Africa. Eight tests have been played between the two nations over the past four years. Not one of them has ended in a draw and both countries have won four tests each; South Africa winning in Australia in 2009 while the Kangaroos reversed the trend when the toured the Rainbow nation later that year. A hastily scheduled two test series last year dished out some incredibly extraordinary action as both teams shared the spoils.

South Africa in Australia – A Preview

South Africa in Australia – A Preview

Plenty has changed since the series in Australia in 2009. Nothing more bigger than the fact that South Africa, and not Australia begin the series as the top ranked team in the world. Ricky Ponting no longer walks out to the centre for toss while Peter Siddle is the lone surviving fast bowler from the team that failed to defend a target of 413 at Perth.

Contests between the two sides have not failed to live up to your expectations ever! The infamous tied semifinal and the record run chase of 438 in Johannesburg immediately springs to mind, but Test cricket hasn’t been far behind in filling up the entertainment meter. A young JP Duminy finding company in the form of Dale Steyn to frustrate the Aussie quicks for over four hours or Graeme Smith walking out to bat with a broken hand to give his side a chance of salvaging a draw or Mitchell Johnson forcing Kallis to retire hurt with a blow on his chin are top class Test cricket moments etched in a fan’s mind for eternity.

Australia may have found able replacements in their bowling department but it is the batting that looks oddly fragile. Watson’s injury couldn’t have come at a worse time which means that Ed Cowan will open the innings with Warner at the Gabba with an inexperienced Quiney coming in at No. 3. ahead of Ponting, Clarke and Hussey. South Africa, on the other hand, will be hoping that Ab De Villiers’ back is in better shape than it was in England after he was called up on to take the wicketkeeping duties following the retirement of Boucher. Australia will be wary of South Africa’s three pronged pace attack of Steyn, Philander and Morkel after they were reduced to 21/9 in bizarre circumstances in Cape Town last year. While Australia are yet to find a successor to Shane Warne, Imran Tahir has gradually settled and cemented his place as a part of the Proteas’ long term plans.

Australia were the team defending their top spot when they toured South Africa in 2009 and they came out on top beating the Proteas 2-1 in their own background. If South Africa are able to grind out the same result Down Under, then they would deservedly sitting atop the Rankings table.

Probable Lineups:

Australia: Ed Cowan, Dave Warner, Rob Quiney, Ricky Ponting, Michael Clarke (Captain), Michael Hussey, Matthew Wade (Wicketkeeper), Peter Siddle, Nathan Lyon, Ben Hilfenhaus, James Pattinson.

South Africa: Graeme Smith (Captain), Alviro Peterson, Hashim Amla, Jacques Kallis, Ab De Villiers (Wicketkeeper),Jacques Rudolph, JP Duminy, Dale Steyn, Imran Tahir, Morne Morkel, Vernon Philander.

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Monish Menon

Author:

Hi, I am Monish Menon from Hyderabad and currently working at Franklin Templeton Investments as a Compliance Business Analyst. Sport has always been my passion since I was a kid and I invest all my non-existent free time by watching, playing, writing and analyzing various sporting events across the world. Apart from being a diehard Manchester United fan and a Ferrari supporter, I believe that Roger Federer is still the best tennis player and Sachin Tendulkar is God. I play club cricket and I also am a part of my organization’s cricket and football squad. Being such a sports fanatic, writing about it is something that came naturally to me and I am glad that I got an opportunity through thesportsmirror.com to share my thoughts with the rest of the world. For other articles written by me, you can visit my blog at www.monishmenon.wordpress.com

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