Proteas Women big-hitter Lizelle Lee believes her side have the best bowling attack in the world.
The Proteas recorded a dominating victory against England on Saturday, which saw them reduce their hosts to 189-9 in 50 overs, with their pace bowlers starring on the day.
With four bowlers in the top 10 of the ICC rankings – Marizanne Kapp (third), Shabnim Ismail (sixth), Ayabonga Khaka (eighth) and Dane van Niekerk (ninth) – the women proved their worth.
Ismail (3-25) was fantastic and got her side on the front foot early on, showing great leadership with the ball in hand. She managed dangerous swing and trapped the English by showing incredible aggression.
Khaka continued her phenomenal wicket-taking form from the series against Bangladesh but struggled to be her economical best, finishing with figures of 3-42 at an economy of 4.42 which included six uncharacteristic wides. She came in at the 10-over mark and struck off her first delivery. She was supported at the other end by a tight performance from 21-year-old spinner Raisibe Ntozakhe who finished with 0-21 and the best economy rate of the match of 2.10 in her 10 overs.
Other wicket-takers were Marizanne Kapp (1-51) and Chloe Tryon (1-21), who set up the Proteas’ successful chase.
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‘I believe we have the best bowling attack in the world. I don’t believe there is a team that comes near our bowling attack. The pitch didn’t have too many demons in it, but they just pushed through and took wickets which we didn’t expect,’ Lee told reporters after their seven-wicket win.
‘It is actually great, even if we didn’t get a high total to know that you have a bowling attack like that coming in. I think all three are up there, they’re very good.’
The Proteas have made it their mission to take revenge against the hosts, who broke their hearts in the semi-final of the World Cup in Bristol last year.
Lee was crucial to the Proteas’ victory, smashing an unbeaten 92 off 128, which included 11 fours and two sixes.
‘Yes, it’s a good feeling, but let’s be honest, we know it’s not a World Cup. We came to win a series and it is good to have this type of performances.
‘We have improved immensely [since last year] in all areas. The World Cup was a good campaign for us, we batted well, we bowled well, and we didn’t do anything that badly in the semi-final. England was just a bit better than us. But it is four years of hard work until the next World Cup and it is a series like this that just gives you the confidence until the next one.’
The Proteas face England in the penultimate ODI on Tuesday in Brighton.
Photo: Tony Marshall/Getty Images