Ken Borland
Sports Journalist
2 minute read
2 Nov 2021
8:00 pm

Rabada on his starring role in SA’s big win against Bangladesh

Ken Borland

"We had an idea that it would favour the seamers and we bowled accordingly," said the fast bowler.

Kagiso Rabada of South Africa celebrates the wicket of Mushfiqur Rahim of Bangladesh during their T20 World Cup match in Abu Dhabi on Tuesday. Picture: Francois Nel/Getty Images

“You never really know how a pitch is going to play,” Kagiso Rabada said, “but we had an idea from the warm-up that it would favour the seamers and bowled accordingly.”

And brilliantly.

South Africa bundled Bangladesh out for just 84 in their T20 World Cup match in Abu Dhabi on Tuesday, a total they then chased down with six wickets in hand and 39 balls to spare to significantly boost their nett run-rate.

Rabada led the way with an outstanding display that brought him career-best figures of 3/20. On a pitch that almost demanded Test-style bowling, he was bang on the mark with both his lengths and skills from the outset.

ALSO READ: Rabada, Nortje too hot to handle as Proteas thump Bangladesh

“There was a lot of grass on the pitch and a bit of zip, as well as being a bit two-paced. We learnt from the Australia game here and we also noticed a bit of swing in the warm-up,” Rabada said after the win.

“You never really know how a pitch is going to play, but we had an idea that it would favour the seamers and we bowled accordingly. In my three overs up front there was a bit of bounce, seam movement and swing.

“So conditions were in my favour and you just try to get the ball in the right places. Anrich Nortje [3.2-0-8-3] is also bowling pretty rapidly at the moment and every bowler that came on stuck to the game-plan and got us into an even stronger position.”

South Africa also know full well that their semi-finals qualification could come down to nett run-rate and they used the small target as an opportunity to boost that figure to more than one run per over better than rivals Australia: 0.742 to -0.627.

After a rocky start, they won in the 14th over largely thanks to Temba Bavuma’s quickfire 31 not out off 28 balls. Rabada said criticism of the captain has been ill-informed.

“There’s nothing more to say about Temba, the results are there. You are always going to have critics and we make peace with that, we take the good with the bad,” he said.

“You can’t control what is said outside the game, but we probably put more pressure on ourselves than the public do.

“Obviously we chatted at halfway about nett run-rate and we wanted to try and finish the chase as early as possible. There was a clear instruction to finish before 15 overs, we did that and we are happy.”