Proteas coach Mark Boucher reflected on Sunday’s two-wicket defeat by England at the Wanderers, which meant the visitors were able to draw the three-match ODI series 1-1, writes ANDRE HUISAMEN.
After the tight conclusion to the match at the Bullring, the former South African wicketkeeper said his team had only themselves to blame for not making the most of conditions and not taking opportunities on offer.
‘It was a bad toss to lose but it was a good toss to win in Cape Town and we capitalised on it. We always knew the wicket was going to be a little bit spicy in the morning. Unfortunately we just lost too many wickets when we started getting a bit of momentum going,’ Boucher said.
The regular fall of wickets meant the Proteas were unable to post a big score as they’ve done so often in the past at the same venue. Despite half-centuries by Quinton de Kock and David Miller, the home side could only manage 256-7 in their 50 overs.
‘We were probably 30-40 runs short and a bit below par, while with the ball we just started off really poorly. We were playing catch up after that. We had chances and we didn’t take our opportunities. You have to bowl well up front and you got to take your opportunities – we didn’t do that and that’s why we lost.’
The result meant that the series was shared between South Africa and England after the Proteas won the opening ODI at Newlands, while the second one in Durban last Friday was abandoned due to rain.
Yet, Boucher believes there are a few positives to take from the short series and feels the inexperienced squad did well to compete with the World Champions in the way they did.
‘Both teams went into the series giving opportunities to a few youngsters. There is a long time until the next World Cup, so we can afford to do that. There were a couple of positives that came out of it. I thought Lutho [Sipamla] bowled really well today [Sunday] and Quinny (De Kock) picked up Man of the Series in his debut as captain of a series.
‘There are a lot of good things that have happened and a couple of things that we need to work on, but it is quite difficult to judge over two games, so we will use the next three games against Australia to find some answers and ask some questions,’ said Boucher.
Australia’s tour of South Africa gets under way on 21 February with three T20Is before as many ODIs to be played, starting on 29 February.
Photo: Sydney Seshibedi/Gallo Images